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Hot Stove Talk: Jerome Williams

1/13/2014

Note: Over the next few days, we'll take a look at some external and internal possibilities for the starting pitching rotation to replace Derek Holland, as the lefty is expected to miss the first half of the season.

Today's pitcher: Jerome Williams

The Rangers have shown interest in Williams this offseason as a depth pitcher in a short-term contract and the club has had discussions with Williams, according to a source. Those discussions could heat up even more with Holland out. Williams makes sense on a one-year deal.

I know what you're thinking: Can Williams, who was 9-10 with a 4.57 ERA in 37 games (25 starts) for the Angels, take the place of Holland? Obviously, Williams didn't put up close to the numbers that Holland did in 2013. But this isn't simply about plugging someone in for Holland. It's also about building depth. The Rangers want to do that in a way that is cost-effective as well. That's where Williams makes sense.

If the 32-year-old is willing to take a one-year deal with incentives, why not see what happens? Bring him to spring training and see what he's got. It's a low-risk situation and, at the very least, Williams would be a candidate to give the club some starts before Holland returns. If other internal candidates show the club more than Williams, he could be a long-relief, spot-starting option.

His numbers aren't overwhelming -- he had a 4.46 ERA in his two-plus seasons with the Angels. But under the right kind of contract, he could give the club some depth and another option in the rotation. And you'd think Williams would be motivated to show he's still got something left so he could try to get one more multi-year contract after the 2014 season.

What do you think of Williams? Any interest?