Happy Birthday Devon White

By MJ Lloyd

Devon White was born December 29, 1962 in Kingston, Jamaica. White was drafted by the California Angels in the sixth round of the 1981 draft and would debut for them on September 2, 1985. However, he wouldn’t become a full-time player until 1987 when he’d finish fifth in the American League Rookie of the Year voting. White hit .263/.306/.443 with 24 home runs and 32 stolen bases which was good for a 5.0 rWAR (Baseball-Reference wins above replacement). That was the second best rookie WAR next to some skinny firstbaseman named Mark McGwire who hit .289/.370/.618 and 49 home runs on the way to winning the ROY.

White, somewhat allergic to taking walks, only managed a .295 OBP over his 2,429 plate appearances with the Angels. His value was largely tied to his terrific defense in centerfield and White won the first two of his seven Gold Gloves with the Angels in 1988 and 1989. The Angels traded White and others to Toronto after the 1989 season for Junior Felix and Luis Sojo. Hooray!?

White is better known for his time in Canada where he won two World Series championships and five more Gold Gloves with the Blue Jays. Or that his nickname was “Devo” even though he never wore a planters pot on his head or owned a whip. Allegedly.

White played 17 seasons in the bigs, finishing with the Brewers in 2001, but he was an Angel first. So for that, we wish Devon a happy birthday from the Hangout.