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Waipahu’s Jerome Williams called up to St. Louis Cardinals

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS Los Angeles Angels pitcher Jerome Williams throws to the San Francisco Giants during the first inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif. on June 18, 2012.

A third player with Hawaii ties has joined the St. Louis Cardinals.

Waipahu’s Jerome Williams, who had been pitching for the Triple A Memphis Redbirds, was called up Monday to replace right-handed pitcher Mike Mayers and righty Jordan Walden, who was transferred to the 60-day disabled list with a shoulder injury, according to a story on MLB.com.

Williams joins Hilo’s Kolten Wong and former University of Hawaii teammate Greg Garcia on the Cardinals’ roster.

Williams is 5-3 with a 4.89 ERA in nine starts for Memphis. He signed a minor league contract in June.

Williams joined the team in New York, where the Cardinals are playing the Mets in a double-header today.

“He has the ability to throw a lot of pitches,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said of the right-handed pitcher. “We’ve obviously been working our guys pretty hard … and we needed some reinforcements. Hopefully we don’t need Jerome. I’d love for our starters to go out there and sail, but the likelihood of needing some arms down there is pretty high, and he’s a guy with some experience that has been around a while.”

Williams, 34, has played for seven other major league teams — the Giants, Cubs, Nationals, Angels, Astros, Rangers and Phillies over 10 seasons. He is 52-66 with a 4.57 ERA in 225 games.

Mayers started Sunday and allowed nine runs and eight hits, throwing 62 pitches to get four outs. He became the first pitcher to allow nine or more runs with fewer than two innings pitched in his big league debut since at least 1913.

“He’s a tough kid,” Matheny said. “You could see as things were kind of unraveling, he just kept going, and he was making pitches in the zone for the most part. He just didn’t have his best stuff to put guys away and make the kind of pitches that he wanted to, and I think he got away from his game plan a little bit, which is completely common for not just him but any pitcher that starts to see things snowball.”

Matheny spoke with Mayers after the outing.

“I reminded him, too, the fact that, don’t forget you started in Double-A this year. That’s a big deal, to be able to come in on a team that’s right in the middle of things,” the manager said.

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The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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