For those watching Stephen White pitch for Woodinville last season, they saw someone always battling to get better. Always striving to improve. And as the workhorse pitcher on the Falcon staff, they saw White help lead Woodinville to the 2013 KingCo title.
Now, with graduation over, his next destination is to pitch at Tacoma Community College.
Going back to his North Shore Little League days, White has always just stood out, period.
“I was 6’0” tall when I was 12 years old,” he said. “So I’ve always been a pretty big kid. As I got older, the other kids started to catch up. But I always threw the hardest in my little league. I watched baseball all the time on television. If I saw a pitcher do well one night, I would basically try to emulate him the next day. So that’s basically how I went about my pitching business as I got older.”
Being from Seattle, White’s a Mariners fan. It was from that roster that his favorite players originated.
“When Ichiro came to Seattle in 2001, that was awesome,” he said of the former Mariner. “I’ve always been an Ichiro fan, wherever he’s at. And also being a pitcher, I look up to Felix Hernandez a lot because... he’s just a dude.”
White’s prep career peaked this past spring, as he helped lead the Falcons to the KingCo Championship.
“Senior year you always want to end with a bang,” he said. “Our team caught a hot streak, and I personally caught a hot streak pitching. And definitely the main cause of that was the off speed pitch. I found a good release point with it. I’ve been throwing it since I was younger but it never worked as well as it did this year.”
White’s fastball has reached 90 MPH and usually tops off at 87 MPH. “My breaking ball is pretty slow compared to my fast ball,” he said. “As soon as I added (the improved off speed pitch), it made my fast ball seem ten times harder, which definitely helped.”
White will be pitching next season for Tacoma Community College. “It was pretty awesome knowing that programs out there actually want you to come play for them,” he said. “Even if it is a community college, it’s still a great experience and a great honor. The guys there are really great guys. The main reason I actually went with Tacoma was because of the coaching staff and not because their team was really good or anything. But when I met with some other coaches from around the area when I visited other schools, the Tacoma coaches stuck out in my mind every time.”
Tacoma’s head baseball coach Ryan Mummert is equally enthusiastic.
“Stephen is a young man we are really excited about,” Mummert said. “He has tremendous upside and is just scratching the surface of his potential. What excites me most about him is his competitiveness.
“He is a true competitor every time he steps on the rubber. With his work ethic and commitment level Stephen is going to have numerous opportunities to play (Division 1) or Pro Ball. We can’t wait for him to be a Titan!”