Milwaukee Brewers: Who are Alex Hall and Jesse Williams?

Matthew Dewoskin
MILWAUKEE - MAY 9: A general view of the Milwaukee Brewers hat and glove taken before the game against the Washington Nationals on May 9, 2007 at Miller Park in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The Brewers defeated the Nationals 3-1. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE - MAY 9: A general view of the Milwaukee Brewers hat and glove taken before the game against the Washington Nationals on May 9, 2007 at Miller Park in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The Brewers defeated the Nationals 3-1. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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On December 10th, 2017, the Milwaukee Brewers made a pair of moves that were largely unnoticed. They signed catcher Alex Hall and shortstop Jesse Williams. Unless you are completely obsessed with all things Brewers, you’ve never heard of these guys.

Alex Hall and Jesse Williams are a pair of 18-year old Aussies who recently signed Minor League deals with the Milwaukee Brewers. Both spent the 2016 and 2017 season in the ABL. That’s the Australian Baseball League, not the Alaska Baseball League.

After they finish the current season with the Perth Heat, the two Australian League prospects will likely head to Arizona in the Spring. If all goes well, they’ll spend time with the Brewers Rookie League affiliate. Neither are developed enough to get consideration for top prospect lists, but it’s great to see the Milwaukee Brewers look Down Under for talent again.

How are Williams and Hall doing this year?

Actually, really well, based on the Australian League stats. Keep in mind the season is still going on, but Williams is slashing .330/.364/.486 with three homers and three steals in 28 games. Hall owns a .245/.345/.439 slash line with five homers in 28 games.

Are they real prospects?

They are real in that they are actual humans who play baseball. They’ve never played with a team affiliated with the Milwaukee Brewers. It’s impossible to know until Hall and Williams show up on a Minor League lineup card. According to a blurb on this page, Hall is comparable to Arizona Diamondbacks prospect Jordan McArdle. What’s concerning here is that McArdle posted a .502 OPS in the Arizona Rookie League last year. It’s really best to reserve any judgment until they show up in uniform.

Have the Milwaukee Brewers had players from Australia before?

Uh, Dave Nilsson? Graeme Lloyd? Trent Durrington? Okay, maybe not Durrington so much, but the Milwaukee Brewers have a history of success with Australian players. Let’s hope that one or both of Hall and Williams will get mentioned along with the trio of Australian players who spent time with the Brewers.

Next: What's Taylor Williams up to this off season?

While Hall and Williams may never see a Major League roster, it’s great to know that the Milwaukee Brewers have eyes everywhere for talent. The Brewers wouldn’t have offered the pair a contract, and have plans to bring the duo stateside if they didn’t think they had talent. This is a story that Brewers fans will have to keep an eye on as Hall and Williams start to climb through the lower ranks this season.

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