It's taken him a while, but Angels right-hander Jerome Williams finally made his pitch to be the team's fifth starter.
On a minor league field in Phoenix, Williams worked three scoreless innings Monday against the Oakland A's in a Triple-A game. It marked his spring debut after he was slowed by a strained left hamstring.
The job of No. 5 starter figured to be his all along, but now Williams is locked in a battle with right-handed prospect Garrett Richards, who started for the Angels against the Colorado Rockies at Tempe, Ariz.
Richards has the early lead, but Williams will have a chance to come on quickly. He threw a carefree 41 pitches against the A's, giving up one hit, walking one and striking out four. He's scheduled to pitch again Saturday in another minor league game.
The Angels don't need a fifth starter until April 15 when they visit the New York Yankees, so Williams, despite his lack of work so far, will have time to get his arm ready.
"He still has an opportunity ...