W T White's baseball playoff streak hits 31 years

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by GEORGE RIBA/WFAA TV

WFAA Sports

Posted on May 3, 2013 at 7:33 PM

DALLAS, TX - David Shepherd is the baseball coach at W.T.White high school in Dallas.

 
Under his leadership, the baseball team has not missed the playoffs in 31 years.
 
"You know when we get out, we try to teach the kids to do it the right way and to play the game the right way and respect the game because it's been my life," says Shepherd. "I mean, baseball, since I was a little kid, I don't know what else I could do."
 
"You don't want to be that class to end the streak so it just propels you to do better and just go out there and play," says W.T. White centerfielder Buddy Cardoza.
 
Shepherd turned 70 earlier this year and has been coaching for 38 years. His name and baseball go hand in hand here at W.T. White. The field is even named in his honor.
 
"He likes for us to develop as players how we're going to," says second baseman Colton Hamilton. "He doesn't try to shape us into what he wants."
 
"I may be an adrenaline freak, I don't know, because this game, it’s addictive," says Shepherd.
 
For the last five years, Shepherd has been battling Parkinson’s disease which means he's constantly taking medication.
 
"You know I don't want to use that as any kind of a sympathy thing because we're all going to have something one of these days and it's just something you learn to deal with and live with," Shepherd says.
 
As a result, Shepherd doesn't coach at third base any more. He’s letting his assistants do that but he still makes trips to the field.
 
"Yeah, when he comes out there is a reason for it," says assistant coach Matt Whatley. "I think he gets his point across well."
 
"I don't go out on the bases," Shepherd says. "The only time I go out on the bases now if the umpire screws up."
 
And of course, that never happens.

Follow George Riba on Twitter at @GeorgeRiba

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