POKES IN THE PROS - SCOTT WILLIAMSON

Scott Williamson

Former OSU right-hander Scott Williamson's return from the disabled list last week has boosted the Boston Red Sox's chances of overtaking the New York Yankees in the American League's East Division.

Scott Williamson, 28, has been one of the majors' top set-up relievers this season with a 1.59 ERA in 15 games. He was sidelined three weeks due to elbow tendinitis.

Red Sox manager Terry Francona told Boston media, `He's a dominant pitcher. This is great having him back. ... On that last road trip we missed him.'

Williamson had a career-high 21 saves last season for Cincinnati before being traded to the Red Sox. Boston used him as a set-up man until the playoffs, when he went 2-0 with three saves and 1.12 ERA in eight postseason games.

Williamson pitched two seasons for Tulane before transferring to OSU. He went 7-3 for the Cowboys in 1997 and signed with the Reds after being drafted in the ninth round.

Williamson reached the majors quickly. In 1999, he was named the National League's Rookie of the Year and was selected to play in the All-Star Game. He was 12-7 with a 2.41 ERA and 19 saves.

After being sidelined for most of the 2001 season, Williamson made a strong comeback in 2002, going 3-4, 2.92 in 63 games for the Reds.

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