Showers ready to reign at UW

Scholarship money was there at Washington State University, and Columbia Basin Community College was frothing at the mouth. But Josh Showers’ heart told him the University of Washington was where he wanted to go to school and play baseball.

Showers, the Narrows League Bridge Division MVP who helped guide the South Kitsap High School baseball team to a state fourth place finish in May, signed a partial scholarship (books only) last month to play for the Huskies.

He hit .532 with four home runs during the regular season with 26 RBI.

Showers said he was initially disappointed with Washington’s offer but was later fine with it, knowing the opportunity would be there to earn a fill scholarship.

“I wanted U-Dub all along, but I didn’t get the (scholarship) money I wanted,” Showers said. “But they told me if I play more they’ll offer more scholarship money.”

Showers said it wasn’t a lack of ability that led to UW offering only book money.

The Huskies return starting middle infielders Tila Reynolds and Greg Isaacson, both of whom are expected to turn pro after next year.

That will open the door for Showers and Jackson High’s Brent Lillibridge, who will be groomed this year as the future double-play combination.

As for who will make the move to second base, Showers said he thinks he’ll be the likely candidate.

SK coach Elton Goodwin said he can see Showers as a dominant second baseman.

“I think he’s a second-base type,” Goodwin said. “He’s got really quick hands.”

Whether it’s shortstop or second base, Goodwin said the Huskies recruited one of the best bats in the state.

“I couldn’t be more pleased for Josh,” Goodwin said. “He’s got all the hitting ability, and he can hit the long ball.”

Goodwin said he was baffled at the lack of recruiting for Showers.

“The recruiting for pro and college is so out of whack,” he said. “On performance alone, I would have recruited Josh.”

One of the slight question marks on Showers was his wiry frame.

His frame has never hindered his hitting, though, Goodwin said.

Showers said he is dedicated to the training regiment the UW coaching staff sent him.

“I’m spending the off-season catching up physically,” Showers said. “I’ve never lifted weights or eaten so much before, so I’m not used to this. But I want to bulk up and improve.”

Though the expectation won’t be there until his sophomore year, Showers said he’s preparing himself to be able to step in if one of UW’s starting midfielders gets injured.

Showers, who just finished playing 70 games this summer for Wilkinson Academy, said he’ll be physically and mentally ready to play.

The fall season is just six weeks away, but Showers said he’s been able to fine-tune his skills this summer.

“Oh, definitely,” Showers said. “I’ve gotten faster and I’m in a zone where the ball seems to be going in slow motion.”

Showers said the only big adjustment, other than facing college pitching, will be the absence of pinstripes.

“I’ve worn pinstripes my whole career,” Showers said. “It’ll be different. But I’m looking forward to playing at the college level.”

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