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Williams also went by 'Carson City Crusher'

Matt Williams, manager, Nationals
Hometown: Carson City, Nev.

Williams' family moved to Carson City from Bishop, Calif.., when he was a kid, and it's a good thing. Otherwise, he never would have been nicknamed the "Carson City Crusher."

With the Senators, where he teamed up with fellow future big leaguers Bob Ayrault and Charlie Kerfeld, Williams also starred on the football and basketball teams, though baseball was No. 1.

"When Matt hit the ball, Matt hit the ball," said Ron McNutt, the legendary Carson High coach. "Singles were not just singles. They were crushed. He was fun for a coach to just sit and watch perform."

The Mets picked Williams in the 27th round of the 1983 First-Year Player Draft, and he was "torn," according to McNutt, but Williams delayed a pro career to attend the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, where his No. 15 is now retired. He went third overall to the Giants in 1986. 

If the Nats win it all this year, it won't be the first time for Williams or his extended family. Williams was a member of the 2001 World Series champion D-backs, and his grandfather -- outfielder Bert Griffith -- played six games for the 1924 champion Washington Senators.

Tim Healey is an associate reporter for
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