THE WHITE KNIGHT

RETIRES FROM THE JOUST

NSW Patriots | Gay White | Uniform #15

Gary WHITE

Uniform #15

photo by Pat Milmlow

 

Loyalty Courage Determination Passion Focus

 
 

". . . . these are just a few of the qualities by which this young man

 will long be remembered as one of the game's great champions"

John Kaliff

(President, Canterbury Bankstown District Baseball Club)

 

GARY WHITE -#15 Born 08 December 1967 to proud parents Patricia and Gordon White. 

'Whitey' began playing at the age of five and enjoyed a long and distinguished baseball career that included his representing New South Wales & Australia at both junior & senior levels.

Both parents sacrificed much to ensure his continuing participation in the sport he loved. At an elite level, such sacrifices and their attendant costs, as so many parents will readily testify, can never be measured purely in terms of coinage spent and material blessings foregone.

A Tee-Baller under the watchful eye and care of his father Gordon, himself a baseball player and coach, Gary came through the Canterbury-Bankstown junior ranks before signing on with the CB Vikings.

It was here, in the Vikings camp, that he would meet up with two resident distinguished veteran NSW coaches, Peter Worboys and Barry Holland, who would begin to shape his baseball prowess, and professional career.  And it was there, during those formative years that his passion for the game accelerated.

Following Gary's return to Australia after two years at a Detroit College (High School) Gary was spotted by Barry Holland acquaintance and Phillies scout, Eddie Bockman.  In 1986, Gary signed a professional contract, and played with the Philadelphia Phillies from 1986 1989.  The Phillies won the South Atlantic League Championship in 1988.

NSW Patriots | Gary White | circa 1986

December 1986

Just signed with the Philadelphia Phillies

At the 1997 Intercontinental Cup in Barcelona, Gary helped Australia to a bronze medal and was named '1997 All-World Catcher' an outstanding honour for a player.

Gary White was a member of the Sydney Blues / Storm throughout the 10 year history of the Australian National League. It was during this golden decade in Australian Baseball's history that he endeared himself (as did other players) to a whole new generation of Sydney baseball fans and kids who regularly turned out in their thousands during the season to follow the fortunes of their Sydney Storm.

NSW Patriots | Gary White at bat | Sydney Storm | Concord Oval | 1990s

circa 1990s

Sydney Storm game at Concord Oval

Three weeks into the 1998/1999 Australian Baseball League Season, Gary faced the toughest challenge of his life.  He was diagnosed with Testicular Cancer.  Missing only 2 weeks of the season after the operation, Gary continued to play throughout the four weeks of of his post-operation Radiation Treatment.

While this was a remarkable achievement in itself, what followed was even more so.  Gary finished the Season with the 2nd highest batting average in the league and was runner up in the MVP award.

He became the first Catcher in Australian Baseball League history to win the coveted Gold Glove Award.
At the 1999 Intercontinental Cup Gold Medal Final played out at Sydney Olympic Park in 1999 against 9-times gold medalists Cuba, Gary became Australia's instant hero when, in the top of the 11th inning and the game tied at 3-all, he stepped to the plate as pinch-hitter for Michael Moyle with 2 outs (Grant McDonald K2 & David Nilsson F8) and the winning run (Peter Vogler pinch-running for Ron Johnson) on second base following consecutive walks for batters Johnson and Paul Gonzales.  With a game-winning hit to centre field, driving home Vogler, Gary clinched the first ever Baseball GOLD MEDAL for Australia.

NSW Patriots | Gary White | November 19999 | Australia's Gold Medal win

14 November 1999

XIV Basbeall Intercontinental Cup - Gold Medal Game

Sydney Olympic Park

(l. to r.) Ron Johnson (1B) Gary White (PH) David Nilsson (C)

Gary is idolised by thousands of young baseball players throughout Australia, and particularly in his home state, NSW.

An inspiration to a whole generation of baseball players, young and old, Gary, now in his 40th year, married and raising a family, has made the difficult decision to lay down his glove, bat and catcher's gear from representative baseball.

This is a sad occasion for all who know Gary personally and sad, indeed, for all who knew him if only from a distant stadium seat. 

An Australian Baseball Hall-Of-Famer he is not .... yet!

It matters not.

The legend of the White Knight from Sydney's inner-western Canterbury Bankstown District [Vikings] Baseball Club has already etched itself into the hearts and minds of Baseball's most powerful committee The Fans!

NSW Patriots | Gary White and VJ | Baseball NSW Coaching Clinic

15 July 2003

Blacktown Olympic Park Baseball Complex

NSW Baseball U14s Baseball Clinic

Gary White with Patriots Bat Boy, VJ Hocking one of thousands of kids who benefited from Gary's involvement in baseball coaching clinics over many years

 

Blacktown Baseball Complex 21 January 2006 is the venue for the opening night of the National Baseball Championships (Claxton Shield) and the game is due to commence in a little over one hour at 1930hrs. 

The NSW Patriots' pre-game activities are temporarily suspended as they assemble at a small, private function hosted by Baseball NSW.

In attendance, along with NSW Patriots players and team staff, are Bruce Auty (Board Chairman, Baseball NSW) Glen Willott (CEO, Baseball NSW) and a very special guest .... Gary White.

Following a brief, pertinent speech by Mr Auty, he announces to the gathering that Uniform #15 would be retired by Baseball NSW as a mark of respect ... to honour a great champion.

NSW Patriots Rookie, and youngest member of the Team, Joshua Dean, is invited by Bruce Auty to present Gary White with Patriots Uniform #15.

Whitey responds.

No cameras flashing ... just a brief silence ... then applause.

It is a proud and contemplative moment for all.

 

NSW Patriots | Uniform #15 | Gary WHITE

photo by Charlie Straumietis

 

24 January 2005

Blacktown Olympic Park

Game 3 National Baseball Championships

South Australia (5) -v- New South Wales (0)

Pitch thrown by: Jarad Mangioni #32

 
     
  The sight of uniform #15 entering the arena will live long in the minds of all whose privilege it was to be a spectator when the White Knight donned his armour and strode out to do battle.  
     
 

photo by Charlie Straumietis

 
 

29 January 2005

Blacktown Olympic Park

Final National Baseball Championships

Victoria (4) -v- NSW (8)

The last Patriots game for Gary White

photograph taken at top of the 4th inning Ben Williams pitching

 
     
 

Ceremonial Pitch

 
 

NSW Patriots | Gary White | Ceremonial Pitch

photo by Peter Davies Photography

 
 

23 January 2006

Blacktown Olympic Park

Day 3 Game 9 National Baseball Championships

NSW (2) -v- QUEENSLAND (5)

Ceremonial Pitch Gary White

 
     
 

Official Public Presentation

 
 

NSW Patriots | Official Presentation Bruce Auty to Gary White of Retired Uniform #15

photo by Peter Davies Photography

23 Janury 2006

Blacktown Olympic Park

National Baseball Championships

 Baseball New South Wales Chairman of the Board Bruce Auty

NSW Patriots #15 Gary White

Official Public Presentation upon Retirement of Uniform #15

 
     

GARY WHITE

20 YEAR CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

1986-2005


NATIONAL SENIOR TEAM
Australian Olympic Team - 2000 Sydney Olympic Games
Australian Team - 1999 Intercontinental Cup - Sydney

 
GOLD MEDAL WINNERS
Australian Team - 1997 Intercontinental Cup - Spain


BRONZE MEDAL WINNERS
World All Star Team - 1997 Intercontinental Cup Spain

 

AUSTRALIAN TEAM
Australian Team member 1995 2000

 

AUSTRALIAN BASEBALL LEAGUE/NSW BASEBALL LEAGUE
Australian Baseball League Golden Glove Award 1998/1999

Named to All Star Team 7 times
Sydney Storm MVP 1998/1999
Sydney Storm Batting Champion 1998/1999
Australian Baseball League MVP 1996
Championship MVP 1996
Sydney Storm MVP 1996
Member of the Sydney Team since 1990
Sydney Major League 2001/2002 Championship MVP
Sydney Major League 2002/2003 MVP

 

AUSTRALIAN BASEBALL CHAMPIONSHIPS | CLAXTON SHIELD

NSW Patriots 1986-1988 and 2000-2005

 

UNIFORM RETIRED

NSW Patriots Uniform #15 retired by Baseball NSW on 21 January 2006

 

 

 
 

AUSTRALIAN BASEBALL LEAGUE  (ABL)   LIFETIME STATISTICS

 

AVG

G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB K SB CS
.319 432 1497 234 478 100 2 82 282 97 22 13 13

 

A City Honours its Olympic Heroes

 
  NSW Patriots | Gary White | Street Parade | Olympic Athletes  

November 2000

Olympic Parade George Street, Sydney, Australia

(l. to r.)

Matthew Buckley (QLD) Short Stop, David White (VIC) Pitcher,

Gary White (NSW) Catcher, and Rodney Van Buizen (NSW) Infielder

     
  Thanks  Whitey!  
     

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