Published: August 14, 2013
Colorado Springs infielder Drew Garcia ripped a double into left-center field at Security Service Field on Tuesday and raced toward second base during the third inning of Game 1 of the Sky Sox's doubleheader against the Memphis Redbirds. Once he arrived at his destination, his brother. Memphis shortstop Greg Garcia, was there waiting for his older sibling with a smile on his face.
It was a special moment recalled the two El Cajon, Calif., natives after Wednesday's postponement of the Sky Sox game against the Memphis RedBirds due to unplayable conditions. (The game will be made up in a Thursday doubleheader.) This week has been the first time the brothers - who are separated by three years and have an older brother Aaron - have played against each other; they never even played on the same team.
"Nice swing, nice swing," Greg said toward his older brother.
Of course the younger sibling followed up with a wise, but playful, comment in brotherly fashion.
"Don't do anything stupid out here," he added. "Don't let me pick you off in front of all of these people."
Drew then smiled back at his younger brother and said, "Don't pick me off."
Drew, 27, called it an "unbelievable" experience, and he couldn't help but smile two innings earlier when Greg, 24, launched a three-run homer in the first inning.
Possibly what was even more special, they added, was that their parents Dave - who played a couple of seasons of minor league ball for the New York Yankees - and Belinda have been in attendance. Drew's fianc?, Lauren, is also in town this week.
"I know after the game our parents' eyes were all puffy," Drew said. "That was the most fulfilling. After my brother's home run I saw my dad and mom cheering. Then I hit the double, and I am at second base, they were hugging each other, loving it."
The brothers, whose grandfather Dave was a major league manager for California and Cleveland from 1977-1982, have enjoyed spending some time together this week. Drew has even given Greg a ride to and from the ballpark every day.
Ironically, right before Drew was traded from the Chicago White Sox to the Colorado Rockies' organization May 27, Greg had a dream that his older brother was part of a deal for Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Homer Bailey.
A couple of days later, a different dream became reality when Greg realized he and his brother would meet for the first time on the field.
"I knew we played them (Colorado Springs), and I circled the day on my calendar," Greg said. "I have been looking forward to this all year. It's so awesome."
Both admit it's tough being away from each other during the season after training and working out together for five-to-six months a year near their home in Santee, Calif., 15 minutes northeast of San Diego.
However, Greg admitted, with a smile, that Drew is a better ballplayer than roommate.
"He is a little on the messy side," Greg laughed. "I'm a tidy guy and like to leave things nice and neat, Drew not so much. He doesn't really match his socks together - that's kind of a big thing for me. He leaves the cap off the toothpaste. Besides that, he is a pretty decent roommate.
"He definitely can cook. I'll give him that."
Dinner or laundry may not be on the line this week; however, you can bet when the duo returns to San Diego this offseason that a little joshing will ensue.
"It's competitive and we will push each other," Drew said, "but we are each other's biggest fans. We are there to support each other."