FORT MYERS, Fla. – Florida Gulf Coast University’s Ryan Williams signed a minor league free-agent contract with the Cincinnati Reds this past weekend. The Eagles’ left-hander will be assigned to the Reds’ affiliate in the Gulf Coast Rookie League based in Sarasota, Fla.
Williams becomes the fifth Eagles’ baseball player to sign with a major league baseball team and the third from this past season’s squad which finished 41-17 and advanced to the NCAA Division II South Region Championship Tournament.
In June's MLB Amateur Draft two other Eagles' were selected. Senior third baseman Jason Louwsma was drafted in the 29th round by the Cincinnati Reds while junior right-handed pitcher Justin Stiver was taken in the 17th round by the Houston Astros.
The hard-throwing Williams played two full seasons with the Eagles. In 2004, Williams led FGCU with 8 wins and two complete games. He was second on the staff with an ERA of 2.78 and struck out a team high 73 batters. Williams then sat out the 2005 season as a medical red-shirt. This past season, Williams went 6-1 in seven starts with an ERA of 4.20. He pitched 55.2 innings and struck out 65 batters. He picked up one of FGCU's two NCAA victories with a strong outing against Catawba College. Williams only gave up four homeruns all season and opponents hit .284 off him. Williams is No. 1 all-time at FGCU in most strikeouts per nine innings with 10.27. Also, he is fifth all-time in ERA (3.38), third in wins (14), and third in strikeouts (143).
For more information on the Gulf Coast Reds, go to www.minorleaguebaseball.com