Hairston Brothers Mark the Latest Chapter of San Diego Padres' Brotherly Love
Scott and Jerry Hairston have always shared the same last name. Now they share the same major league uniform.
Countless childhood memories in the backyard are shared by brothers, emulating and envisioning one day playing together in the big leagues. The San Diego Padres have made that dream a reality several times—only in a much bigger backyard.
Roberto and Sandy Alomar Jr. donned the brown and orange in the late 1980s, and Tony and Chris Gwynn were teammates for the Padres' NL West title team in 1996. Trevor and Glenn Hoffman (a Padres coach), Brian and Marcus Giles, and Adrian and Edgar Gonzalez have all carried on the brotherly tradition in San Diego.
Jerald and Phil Clark, Greg and Mike Maddux, and Melvin and Wilbert Nieves are brothers that all played for the Padres, though not during the same year
In a frenzied two day span in mid-January, Padres general manager Jed Hoyer acquired Scott as part of the deal that sent third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff to the Oakland A’s. Less than 48 hours later, Jerry signed a one-year, $2.125 million contract with the Padres
The Padres opening day infield will feature David Eckstein at second base, Everth Cabrera at shortstop, and Chase Headley at the hot corner. No need to worry for Jerry—he can play all three positions and will get plenty of action in a super-utility role
If Spring Training and Cactus League action is any indication, it will be tough for manager Bud Black to keep Jerry out of the lineup.
Simply put, Jerry has been electric this spring. He leads the team in both average (.450) and runs (15), while posting monster numbers in on-base percentage (.511) and slugging percentage (.675).
There’s no question they are close—living just a minute from each other in La Jolla, they are planning to carpool together to PETCO Park.
Fortunately, this brotherhood likely won’t turn into a position sibling rivalry. With disparity in everything from appearance and characteristics to position and styles of play, Scott and Jerry are more different than alike.
Scott is a 6'0", 190 pound power-hitting outfielder with a low key demeanor. Jerry is a 5'10", 190 pound versatile infielder (although he played right-field with the Yankees last season) who is almost always talking or laughing.
At least they have one thing in common, though. Their DNA.
San Diego natives Adrian and Edgar Gonzalez shared the better part of two seasons together in the same Padre uniform. But that chapter came to an end this past January when Edgar signed with the Tokyo Yomiuri Giants of Japan's Central League.
Older brother Edgar’s major league stint was short-lived (two years)—and forgettable. He posted career lines of.255/.312/.385 and 11 home runs. But the younger Adrian (career .281 BA, 137 career HR) has already put the duo in the argument for best Friars brotherly act.
The homegrown brother act of Brian and Marcus Giles returned to San Diego in 2007, when Marcus joined Brian for one year of his seven-year tenure with the Padres. Marcus spent six out of his seven years with the Atlanta Braves before finishing his career with Brian and San Diego.
The Pittsburgh Pirates enjoyed the prime of Brian’s career. Brian batted .305 with 165 home runs in five years with the Pirates. In seven seasons with the Padres, he batted only .279 with 83 home runs.
A career .285 batter and 72 home runs with the Braves, Marcus had the worst season of his career with the Padres (.229 avg, 4 HR).
While Sandy Jr. only appeared in all of eight games in the first two years of his career with San Diego, he went on to earn six all-star appearances. Sandy Jr. was traded to the Indians in a deal for Joe Carter by then-general manager and manager Jack McKeon, because the Padres already had an all-star catcher in Benito Santiago, also from Puerto Rico.
The younger Roberto emerged onto the scene as a rookie with the Padres and played three seasons with the Friars. After receiving an all-star vote in his final season in San Diego, Roberto went on to accumulate 12 consecutive all-star appearances, 10 Gold Gloves, a .300 lifetime batting average, 2,724 hits, and a .984 fielding percentage.
In his first year of Hall of Fame eligibility (2010), Alomar missed induction by eight votes, garnering 73.7% of the vote.
Tony Gwynn, Mr. Padre himself, was joined by his brother Chris for the 1996 campaign. Chris, an outfielder, mainly served as a pinch hitter (.261 career avg) for the majority of his 10 season career.
There is too much to be said about Mr. Padre. Tony played his entire career with San Diego, en route to 15 all-star selections, five gold gloves, and seven slugging awards. The first ballot hall-of fame recipient conducts certain Padres broadcasts and heads the San Diego State baseball program.
The Hairstons got a glimpse of what might be in store in 2009 when they played together for Team Mexico in the World Baseball Classic. The second round was played in their new backyard—PETCO Park.
The Fathers have emphasized fraternal bonding more than any other organization since 1969.
If the trend continues, they might have to consider changing their team name to Los Hermanos .
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