Family matters: Williams ‘cherishes’ long-awaited Cubs debut originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
Trevor Williams’ dad, Richard, has been almost as big a celebrity with Cubs Nation as the starting pitcher has since the junior Williams signed a one-year deal with the Cubs in January.
A Chicagoan who went to Brother Rice before moving west with his family, Richard celebrated the signing on social media and might as well have been on the mound with Trevor for the right-hander’s Cub debut Monday for all the attention he got from the broadcast and social media on this night, too.
“They’ve been looking forward to this moment for a long time, really from the day there was interest [from the Cubs],” said Trevor, who took a perfect game into the sixth, a shutout into the seventh and wound up earning a 5-3 victory over the Brewers in the opener of a three-game series Monday.
“It’s just a really special moment for my family and I. We’re thankful they were able to be in the stands to celebrate it,” Trevor added. “It wouldn’t have been the same if they weren’t in the stands. To feel the energy, too, from all the fans at Wrigley was incredible. It’s something I’m going to remember and I’m going to cherish and really looking forward to the rest of the season.”
Williams, whose six strikeouts included two of former MVP and longtime friend Christian Yelich, got a standing ovation when he left with two on and a 4-0 lead in the seventh (before the inherited runs scored on an Omar Narvaez homer off Jason Adam).
But that was nothing compared to knowing who made up one specific pod within the pandemic-limited crowd on this night.
“We’re thankful for every opportunity we get a chance to put on the uniform, and I’m thankful for every opportunity my family gets to watch me pitch and celebrate my successes and failures,” said the former Pirates pitcher. “They’re my rocks and something that I really, really cherish.”
Trevor got a few laughs in spring training when he described how his dad has always insisted on buying his own tickets to Trevor’s games over the years — despite every big-league player’s access to an allotment of free tickets.
This time was no different. Well sort of.
Richard still didn’t accept tickets from Trevor.
“He accepted tickets from Jason Heyward’s wife,” Trevor said.
“Jason Heyward and his wife offered my family his tickets yesterday knowing they were in town,” Trevor said. “I said, ‘I’m not giving you tickets, but the Heywards want to give you tickets. Is that OK?’
“He said, ‘Of course.’ “
Turns out Trevor was able to take care of the rest.