Gleeman: The Seagers’ pursuit of best-brother status in baseball

From SABR member Aaron Gleeman at Baseball Prospectus on August 16, 2016:

As an only child, I’ve spent a great deal of my life thinking about what growing up with siblings would have been like. There are no doubt plusses and minuses, and most people with siblings probably did just as much daydreaming about life as an only child. I was a sports-obsessed kid with very limited athletic ability, and as it became more and more obvious that my baseball and basketball careers would be coming to an end around age 16 part of my natural coping process was convincing myself that not having a brother to constantly compete against held me back.

Now that I’m a sports-obsessed 33-year-old with very limited athletic ability, I’m fairly certain that any brother I had would have been similarly mediocre, but there’s a sliver of hope that lives in the unknown. One of my best friends growing up was a good basketball player—a quick, aggressive point guard who went on to play in college. His older brother—a slower, less aggressive shooting guard with seemingly unlimited range—was starring in high school during our formative years and the frequency and intensity with which they played against each other was eye-opening to me.

I played basketball almost every day with friends or teammates, including those two brothers, but I also often went outside by myself and put up shots in the driveway. Thousands upon thousands of shots, all of them unguarded and at my own pace and absent any sort of pressure. Meanwhile in another driveway, my friend and his brother were battling. They contested every shot, scrapped for every point like their lives depended on it, and had a daily intensity to their basketball playing that I experienced maybe once a month.

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Originally published: August 16, 2016. Last Updated: August 16, 2016.