SAN DIEGO — San Diego Padres third base coach Matt Williams has colon cancer and will have surgery on Friday.

Mike Shildt, the former St. Louis Cardinals manager who is a senior adviser with the Padres, will fill in as third-base coach beginning Thursday, when the most eagerly anticipated season in franchise history begins with a home game against the Colorado Rockies.

Williams, a five-time All-Star in a 17-year career spent mostly with the San Francisco Giants, said he was diagnosed about three weeks ago.

“I don’t have any symptoms, I don’t have any issues, but at this point it’s important that we get it out of there,” Williams said Wednesday.

Williams, 57, said initial scans show that the cancer hasn’t spread. “That’s a good thing, so we’ll see how it goes from here. … I’ll do what I can and fight as hard as I can to get back as quickly as possible.”

Williams played 10 seasons with San Francisco, one with Cleveland and six with Arizona, including 2001 when the Diamondbacks won the World Series. He won four Gold Glove Awards and four Silver Slugger Awards.


RANGERS: Center fielder Leody Taveras will start the season on the injured list while still recovering from a strained oblique sustained during a batting practice session at spring training.

With Taveras on the IL, the Rangers will have Travis Jankowski on the Opening-Day roster after he went to spring training as a nonroster player. He is a center fielder who has played for five teams over eight major league seasons, including 43 games for the New York Mets last year.

• Jacob deGrom will make his debut for the Texas Rangers — and in the American League — against a familiar foe from his nine seasons with the New York Mets.

The two-time NL Cy Young Award winner will be limited to about 65 pitches Thursday against the reigning National League champion Philadelphia Phillies. Just having deGrom healthy and on the mound for the season opener is a positive start for the Rangers and the pitcher whose last two years in New York were plagued by injuries.

Texas was overly cautious with its prized offseason addition ( $185 million, five-year contract in free agency ) after he reported tightness in his left side just before the team’s first official spring training workout. The right-hander struck out 10 over 6 2/3 scoreless innings in his only two exhibition games in Arizona, which came after throwing batting practice and in a minor league game.

PHILLIES-ATHLETICS: The Philadelphia Phillies acquired center fielder Cristian Pache from the Oakland Athletics in exchange for a minor league pitcher.

Pache has played in in 115 games for the Atlanta Braves (2020-21) and Athletics (2022). He played center field in all but two of them.

The Phillies opened a spot on the 40-man roster by placing first baseman Rhys Hoskins on the 60-day injured list.
The A’s got 23-year-old right-hander Billy Sullivan. He was signed by the Phillies as a nondrafted free agent in 2020 and went 5-1 last season with Double-A Reading.

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