Steiger a Coug in Wolves clothing

The No. 3 hitter for the South Kitsap baseball team didn’t want any more distractions when the season got under way.

Junior third baseman Brady Steiger said he committed to Washington State over Oregon last week. Commitments are non-binding until national letter-of-intent day in November.

“I narrowed it down early to Wazzu and Oregon,” he said. “It took me about eight weeks, but I’m confident and happy with my choice.”

Oregon, which hasn’t fielded a baseball team since 1981, will rejoin the Pac-10 next spring and Steiger said the prospect of joining a new program excited him.

But he preferred the prospect of playing at WSU, which featured a 10-2 record after taking three of four from Kent State last weekend.

Steiger also received an offer from the University of Washington, where South teammate Collin Monagle has committed, but said he never considered the Huskies.

“The whole big city didn’t work for me,” he said. “With Pullman, it’s the Cougars, and the whole town loves them.”

Steiger, who holds a 3.71 grade-point average and also received interest from Stanford, said the Cougars recruited him as a third baseman and he expects to contend for immediate playing time.

WSU’s starting third baseman, Paul Gran, graduates after this season, but Steiger won’t join the team until 2010.

“He’s a pretty quiet kid who just goes about his business, gets good grades and does all the things he’s supposed to,” South coach Jim Fairweather said. “I think Washington State was offering him a spot where he can start or at least play right away and that appealed to him the most.”

He hit .411 with a .500 on-base percentage and had six doubles and six steals for the Wolves last year.

Steiger said he also will consider the major-league draft, but college is his preference for now.

“Pros are my ultimate goal,” he said. “If you get anywhere near a million, that’s probably the right choice. But the minor leagues isn’t a good life.”

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