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Ducks Watch: Shawn Williams

Ducks Shawn Williams (11) connects for a single

Ducks Shawn Williams (11) connects for a single early in the game against Maryland. (June 17, 2012) Credit: George A. Faella

Utility man Shawn Williams, 28, came of age in major league ballparks. The son of former MLB manager Jimy Williams, Shawn Williams spent many adolescent summers with his father, who managed the Red Sox from 1997-01. Shawn Williams began his professional career in 2006 with the Fort Worth Cats of the American Association before spending parts of four seasons in the Tampa Bay Rays organization. In his first season with the Ducks, he already has played five positions (including catcher) and is batting .313 with four home runs and 23 RBIs.How much time did you spend around your father when he managed the Red Sox?

"It was the time of my life. Every summer, I'd go up to Boston and stay with my dad. I would go to the ballpark and on some road trips.

"I can't describe how awesome it was. It was a great learning experience, watching these amazing players day in and day out."

 

Did any of the big leaguers take you under their wing?

"Scott Hatteberg was a guy who would always talk to me. Trot Nixon, Jason Varitek and Nomar Garciaparra were great to me. John Valentin would help me with ground balls. It was great getting a chance to meet these guys and see how hard they went after it every day."

 

What are the advantages of having a big league manager as a father?

"I don't know if it's much of an advantage once you get to professional baseball because everyone is a great ballplayer. I just look at it as a great experience that I've had since I was a little kid. I didn't take it for granted. I loved every second of it, and I just enjoyed it to its fullest. I got to go the park with my dad, shag fly balls and just have a great time."

 

What sort of pride do you take in being able to play so many positions?

"It just sort of makes it fun to come to the park every day. I've never played one position back-to-back years. It's fun going to the park not knowing where I'm going to play. It keeps me ready and prepared to play that night."

 

What do you attribute to your success this season?

"I'm just trying to stay aggressive and use the whole field. It's all about looking for a pitch and not missing it."

 

What have you enjoyed most about your time on Long Island?

"We have a great team here with everybody getting along. I'm having a blast coming to the park every day."

New York Sports