White Ready For New Role

Steven White has been one of the most consistent starters for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees this season, recording a 4-2 record with a 3.55 ERA in nine starts. With the success of Dan Giese and the logjam created by Daniel McCutchen, however, White has been moved to the bullpen and he will now try to break into the big leagues as a reliever.

"I'm fine with the move," Steven White admitted. "The goal is to get to the big leagues, so it should not really matter where I'm pitching. The Yankees just felt that I wasn't going to do that as a starter, they told me that and I accept it. If it gives me a better shot to make it to the majors, then I'll do it."

White was notified that he would officially become a reliever last week. He made his first relief appearance of the season on May 23rd against the Indianapolis Indians, and after hitting Andrew McCutchen and walking Kevin Thompson, he settled down and recorded three consecutive fly-outs to end the inning.

One team official noted that White struggled with his control on the inside portion of the strike zone, but was able to get out of trouble and keep a cool head with men on base.

Like any starting pitcher making the transition to the bullpen, it takes some getting used to. Some pitchers, like Joba Chamberlain do it seamlessly, but others, like Ross Ohlendorf and Steven Jackson sometimes require more time to adjust to the changes. The same team official also noted that White will also probably need some time to acclimate to his new role.

"My approach has only changed a little, but it really takes away from me having to worry about going to my changeup as much," said White. "I can just keep it simple and focus on two pitches.

"I don't have to worry about what I throw because I'll only have to face a batter once, not two or three times. I can just go at a batter and attack them with my best stuff every time out."

When Ohlendorf and Chamberlain moved from the rotation to the bullpen, both encountered a spike in velocity because they no longer had to pace themselves for six or seven innings. White is hoping for the same kind of boost.

"I hope that I can put some extra speed on my fastball. We'll see once I get settled into the role, but I would think it probably would."

White comfortably sits at 90-94 MPH with his fastball as a starting pitcher, and an increase in velocity would certainly help him with the transition.

Throughout his career, White has often been referred to as a "rubber-armed" pitcher because of his durability and easy delivery. Moving such a pitcher to a less physically demanding role could create an ultra-durable reliever that could throw back-to-back days with ease.

After his first relief appearance, White said that he felt good, and that he has been bouncing back well this season. He also added that he thinks he'll have an easy time recuperating after an outing now that he'll only be throwing an inning or two at a time.

Perhaps the Yankees could even explore using White as a long-man, which is something he has been open to in the past. The Yankees have not officially told him what his role in the pen will be, but White seems to like the idea.

"I would think becoming a long reliever would make the most sense, and I would not mind it, but ultimately it's up to them."

Although White has only made two relief appearances thus far, he is beginning to understand psychological differences in the roles.

"You really have more adrenaline as a reliever, and you have to learn to calm down," he opined. "It's the same pitching you've always done, just a different inning, in a different role. The key is staying focused and calming down."

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\r\n \r\n\r\n\"I'm fine with the move,\" Steven White admitted. \"The goal is to get to the big leagues, so it should not really matter where I'm pitching. The Yankees just felt that I wasn't going to do that as a starter, they told me that and I accept it. If it gives me a better shot to make it to the majors, then I'll do it.\"
\r\n
\r\nWhite was notified that he would officially become a reliever last week. He made his first relief appearance of the season on May 23rd against the Indianapolis Indians, and after hitting Andrew McCutchen and walking Kevin Thompson, he settled down and recorded three consecutive fly-outs to end the inning.
\r\n
\r\nOne team official noted that White struggled with his control on the inside portion of the strike zone, but was able to get out of trouble and keep a cool head with men on base.
\r\n
\r\nLike any starting pitcher making the transition to the bullpen, it takes some getting used to. Some pitchers, like Joba Chamberlain do it seamlessly, but others, like Ross Ohlendorf and Steven Jackson sometimes require more time to adjust to the changes. The same team official also noted that White will also probably need some time to acclimate to his new role.
\r\n
\r\n\"My approach has only changed a little, but it really takes away from me having to worry about going to my changeup as much,\" said White. \"I can just keep it simple and focus on two pitches.
\r\n
\r\n\"I don't have to worry about what I throw because I'll only have to face a batter once, not two or three times. I can just go at a batter and attack them with my best stuff every time out.\"
\r\n
\r\nWhen Ohlendorf and Chamberlain moved from the rotation to the bullpen, both encountered a spike in velocity because they no longer had to pace themselves for six or seven innings. White is hoping for the same kind of boost.
\r\n
\r\n\"I hope that I can put some extra speed on my fastball. We'll see once I get settled into the role, but I would think it probably would.\"
\r\n
\r\nWhite comfortably sits at 90-94 MPH with his fastball as a starting pitcher, and an increase in velocity would certainly help him with the transition.
\r\n
\r\nThroughout his career, White has often been referred to as a \"rubber-armed\" pitcher because of his durability and easy delivery. Moving such a pitcher to a less physically demanding role could create an ultra-durable reliever that could throw back-to-back days with ease.
\r\n
\r\nAfter his first relief appearance, White said that he felt good, and that he has been bouncing back well this season. He also added that he thinks he'll have an easy time recuperating after an outing now that he'll only be throwing an inning or two at a time.
\r\n
\r\nPerhaps the Yankees could even explore using White as a long-man, which is something he has been open to in the past. The Yankees have not officially told him what his role in the pen will be, but White seems to like the idea.
\r\n
\r\n\"I would think becoming a long reliever would make the most sense, and I would not mind it, but ultimately it's up to them.\"
\r\n
\r\nAlthough White has only made two relief appearances thus far, he is beginning to understand psychological differences in the roles.
\r\n
\r\n\"You really have more adrenaline as a reliever, and you have to learn to calm down,\" he opined. \"It's the same pitching you've always done, just a different inning, in a different role. The key is staying focused and calming down.\"
\r\n
\r\n

\r\n \r\n \r\n \r\n\r\n
\r\n

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\r\n

\r\n

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