ST. LOUIS - Friday's school shooting in Santa Fe, Texas, hit home for Phillies outfielder Nick Williams. He was raised in nearby Galveston and knows Santa Fe High School well.
"I played on their fields every year," he said. "I played baseball, football, basketball and ran track there.
"I had good relationships with the guys who played ball there. It's sad. It's sickening, to be honest."
Latest news reports had the death toll at 10.
"When I woke up this morning, I had news things and texts saying, ‘Did you see what happened?'" Williams said. "I couldn't believe it.
"I can't imagine, to be honest. It's heartbreaking. My heart and my prayers go out to those families."
Williams' family still lives in the area, not far from Santa Fe High School, he said.
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"Whether it's nearby or in another state, it's still the same. Florida hurt, too, and I'm not from Florida," Williams said, referring to the February shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. "I can't imagine what (Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony) Rizzo is going through because that's his high school (Stoneman Douglas). It's sad. It's crazy that this can happen to kids and they won't be able to grow up and just live their lives. I couldn't imagine what the parents are going through. I can't imagine."
Williams was in the Phillies' lineup in right field for Friday night's game against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium. The flag was flown at half-staff in remembrance of the shooting victims.