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Drama in Granger, Williams to explore options for 2024 season

After a 10-year stint in Granger, Austin "Willy" Williams has decided to explore his options for 2024. On January 24, it was reported that, due to internal team issues, Williams reached out to manager Smith, letting him know he would explore his options. After a long discussion, Smith and Williams came to an agreement that Williams would make his final choice on February 10th. Williams has asked all teams interested in offering him a spot to send him a private DM.


We had a brief chat with Williams and were able to ask him the following:

Why are you thinking about leaving Granger? "I'm exploring my options on the market because I'm a big opportunity guy. I want others on the Panthers who have not played as much to step up and have a bigger role. There has also been some internal conflict with the team, but I still and always will love them like a brother.


What are the odds of you leaving or staying? "I can't give a number for the odds of either. I want to explore. I may not like anything and return home. Regardless of what happens, I want everyone to remember that Granger will always be home.


Are you eyeing a certain team(s) to offer you?" No, I don't currently have a favorite for a team.


We also had a chance to ask Panthers Manager Griffin Smith some questions about this announcement:

Why is Williams leaving? Smith: "I can't go too into depth on this subject, but I do want to say it is nothing between me and Willy; he will always be my brother, and he is always welcome back home if he does end up deciding to leave."

Why make a decision on February 10th? Smith: "I personally wanted to wait as long as possible in hopes that Willy would change his mind. Regardless, we chose a date so that all people involved could have a clear picture before the season started. Those people are us in Granger and those who will end up offering him a spot on their team in the coming days or weeks.


What does the future in Granger look like? Smith: "The future in Granger looks the same as it always has. We will continue to play with our boys; we still have a solid roster of 8–10 guys that are ready to go every Sunday. I do not plan on replacing Willy with anyone if he does leave."


Williams has many accolades with Granger and is the only Panther to play in all 10 of their tournament championships, as well as their 2020 ORWBL World Series title.


Austin Williams resumes with Granger:

2x HD Champion (2016, 2020)

Cam Tourney Champion (2019)

Peacefest Champion (2018)

Wifflehawks Champion (2017)

2x Compete for Cody Champion (2018, 2019)

3x Hometown Cup Champion (2019, 2022, 2023)

2020 ORWBL WS Champion


Williams looks to be one of, if not the most sought-out, players on the ORWBL free agent market in years. His lockdown ability in right field, powerful bat, and all-around ability to win look to give whatever team gets him a major edge in grabbing the ORWBL title.


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