Minnesota Hometown Kid Chases Dream + Dazzles In MLB Debut
Brandon Williamson, a 6'6" left-handed pitcher received an important phone call the other day. He was finally going to get his shot to pitch in Major League Baseball. Brandon is the first person from his small Minnesota County to ever be in the Major League, and he did his hometown proud by dominating the Colorado Rockies.
Brandon grew up in Welcome, Minnesota. That's located in Martin County, which is on Minnesota's southern border. I spoke with a longtime friend of the player, Mike Andrews to get some background on the pitcher
Williamson comes from an athletic family. Mike says they are close family friends and they are a wonderful family and a big part of the community. They played sports together in high school at Martin County West. It's worth noting that some of the MLB info says that Williamson is from Fairmont, but that was quickly corrected by Mike. There's a bit of a cross-county rivalry going on there.
Brandon most recently was playing Triple-A ball in Louisville for the Cincinnati Reds organization. He got the call-up to the majors for the May 16th game Versus the Colorado Rockies, in Colorado. That's a tough place to make a debut.
The reason it's tough pitching at Coors Field is because of the elevation. The air is thinner, and therefore the ball can fly further and a deep shot is more likely to go over the fence. That didn't deter Williamson. He retired 14 batters in a row. In his over five innings of pitching he allowed only two hits and one run. The Reds were able to eventually score and give Williamson his win for the debut.
Family and friends came to Coors Field from Minnesota to witness Brandon's dream come true. A sports rider for the Reds noticed the group was still soaking up the atmosphere 40 minutes after the final out. How cool is that?
Another interesting fact is that Williamson was a heck of a football player too. Local sports guru Dan Brookens actually expected him to go on to be a Division II Quarterback or something along those lines. Williamson stuck with pitching, and his friend Mike now can say that he's hit pitches from a Major League Pitcher, although he added that last time he was home, he has a little more speed on his fastball than he used to.
Congrats Brandon! Way to make Minnesota proud. Here's an interesting fact that Dan told me too: there have only been 187 Major League Players to come out of Minnesota. Williamson is the very first to come from Martin County. That's something to be proud of!