Photo: George Reynolds/Daily News
Mitch Williams lived up to his "Wild Thing" nickname Saturday at a Catholic Youth Organization basketball game in Medford, N.J. The former Phillies hurler cursed at a female referee who was calling a basketball game in which his daughter, a fifth-grader, was playing for St. Mary of the Lakes against Our Lady of Good Counsel.
Williams, who now sells his own brand of salsa and who later this month starts hosting a Phillies pre-game show on The Big Talker 1210 AM, told us yesterday that he was sorry for using the f-word while yelling at the ref. "I'm emotional when it comes to my kids. What I saw happening was completely unfair," Williams said, referring to his daughter's team being fouled repeatedly with a lack of calls from the refs. Williams also appears regularly on the morning show on 610 WIP-AM, and is a Phils post-game analyst on Comcast SportsNet. The apology isn't doing much for Ron Martin, who oversees referees as the Camden Board 34 independent assigner. He said yesterday that he called St. Mary of the Lakes to say that although the season ended last night, if Williams "is going to appear at any games next year, we will not officiate them. If he enters the gym in the middle of a game, we will stop officiating."
Martin is executive editor of the Burlington County Times. "A lot of people challenge calls, but when someone hits on one of the magic words, we can't tolerate that stuff," he said. Martin said Williams' outburst is "not indicative of St. Mary's athletic program. There are some great people over there," he said. The 33-year-old ref declined comment.