Griffin Conine, the son of former major-leaguer Jeff Conine, is having a breakout season at Duke University. The sophomore outfielder is leading the Blue Devils diamond squad in almost every offensive category this year, after playing sparingly as a freshman.
Conine was drafted out of high school by the Miami Marlins in 2015, but elected to attend Duke. He attributes his summer league season last year with providing him with a new level of confidence. He will play in the highly-touted Cape Cod League this summer, where he will continue to hone his skills.
Jeff Conine played 17 seasons in the majors during 1990 to 2007. He was a member of the Florida Marlins’ two World Series championship teams in 1997 and 2003. During his career he hit .285, with 1,982 hits, 214 home runs, and 1,071 RBI.
For more information about Griffin Conine, follow the link below from The Chronicle:
Tate Matheny, who is starting his third season in the Boston Red Sox organization, had a big moment last week when he was called up from his minor league spring training camp in Florida to suit up with the Red Sox against the St. Louis Cardinals. What made that special was the fact his father, Mike, is the manager of the Cardinals. It was Tate’s first chance to play with the big-league club.
Tate was the 4th-round pick of the Red Sox in the 2015 MLB Draft. Last year with Class A Greenville, he posted a .277 average to go along with 5 HR and 52 RBI.
Read more about Tate Matheny’s encounter with his dad from St. Louis Today:
Preston Tucker made his major league debut with the Houston Astros last year, sharing playing time in the outfield. He is one of a group of young Astros players making the team a favorite for the playoffs again in 2016.
Preston’s younger brother, Kyle, was a first-round pick of the Astros in the 2015 MLB Draft and is starting his first professional season this year.
The brothers are hoping to play in the outfield together one day with the Astros.
Read more about the Preston brothers at the link below from kristv.com:
Donnie Walton is currently in his fourth season as shortstop with Oklahoma State University, opting to return for his senior season after being drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers in the 23rd round in the 2015 MLB Draft.
His father, Rob Walton, is the pitching coach at OSU, having also played for the university in 1983-1986 when he pitched on four College World Series teams. Rob played three seasons in the Baltimore Orioles organization before turning to coaching at the college level.
Read more about the Walton father-son combo at the link below from Baseball America:
Elih Marrero is a freshman catcher at Mississippi State University, looking for a starting role this season. He had a good teacher, since his father, Eli, put in ten years as a major league catcher and outfielder from 1997 to 2006.
Elih was a 29th round pick of the Cincinnati Reds in the 2015 Major League Draft, but chose to attend college instead of signing.
Read more about Elih at the link below from The Dispatch:
Contributed by Richard Cuicchi
With the 2015 baseball season behind us, it’s time to provide my annual compilation of the players, managers and coaches from the season who had family relationships in professional baseball. The count this year is 783; but while I scoured all the major league team media guides, many baseball websites, and countless new stories for updates, most assuredly there are still additional players I have yet to identify.
My interest in this aspect of baseball history began when collecting data for my book Family Ties: A Comprehensive Collection of Facts and Trivia About Baseball’s Relatives, published in 2012 containing data through the 2011 season.
Since then, I have continued compiling a comprehensive set of family ties information. The latest 2015 Family Ties list can be found on the Site Pages of this blog.
Below is a sample of interesting facts from the 2015 list.
Minor leaguer Jonathan Roof has nine relatives in baseball. He is the son of former major leaguer Gene Roof, who had four brothers that played professionally. Jonathan also has two brothers and two cousins that played. One of the cousins, Eddie Haas, spent over 50 seasons in baseball as a player, coach and manager.
A’s pitcher Drew Pomeranz’s great grandfather, Garland Buckeye, was a major leaguer from 1918 to 1928.
This year’s list includes several sons of former All-Star players (noted in parenthesis): Ryan Ripken (Cal Jr.), Jordan Hershiser (Orel), Mariano Rivera III (Mariano), Justus Sheffield (Gary), Cam Gibson (Kirk), Tony Gwynn Jr. (Tony), and Patrick Palmeiro (Rafael).
Rays pitcher Brad Boxberger was a major league first round draft choice in 2009, as was his father Rod Boxberger in 1978. 2015 draftee Tyler Nevin and his father Phil (1992 draftee) were both first-round picks.
Pitcher Casey Coleman is part of a three-generation family of major league pitchers. His father Joe pitched between 1965 and 1979, while his grandfather, also named Joe, pitched from 1942 to 1955. Both of them were named to All-Star teams.
Veteran Washington Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth’s father (Jeff Gowan) and stepfather (Dennis Werth) were both professional players. Jayson’s grandfather, Dick Schofield Sr., also played in the majors.
Eddie Gaedel gained fame in baseball as being the only midget to appear in the major leagues. In a stunt produced by St. Louis Browns’ maverick owner Bill Veeck, the 3’ 7” Gaedel drew a walk in his only plate appearance in 1951. Eddie’s nephew, Kyle Gaedele who is 6’ 3”, currently plays in the Padres organization.
Joe Jackson of the Texas Rangers organization is the great nephew of legendary Shoeless Joe Jackson, who was banned from Organized Baseball after the 1920 season for his involvement in the Black Sox Scandal.
Pitcher Randy Wolf’s brother, Jim, is a major league umpire. There is an agreement between major league baseball teams and the umpire’s association that Jim will never call balls and strikes when brother Randy is on the mound.
Rangers’ designated hitter Prince Fielder and his father Cecil rank third all-time among father-son combo home run hitters, only behind Barry and Bobby Bonds and the Ken Griffeys.
The following current players have had better careers than their fathers (in parenthesis) who also played professionally: Mike Trout (Jeff), Kris Bryant (Mike), Michael Brantley (Mickey), and Nick Swisher (Steve)
This version of the 2015 Family Ties List contains 711 major league and minor league players who have a relative in professional baseball. There are also 72 major league managers and coaches.
These 783 players, managers and coaches have a total of 1,094 family relationships with players, managers, coaches, scouts, executives, and broadcasters from the major league teams and their affiliated minor league teams, independent leagues, and the Mexican League. Obviously, several of the players, managers, and coaches have multiple family relationships.
Below are more details about the makeup of the players, managers, and coaches in the entire list.
The 711 players in 2015 included 233 active major leaguers and 478 with only minor league experience.
233 players with major league experience had a total of 331 relatives in professional baseball
- 25 had major league relatives active in 2015
- 102 had major league relatives active before 2015
478 players with only minor league experience had a total of 619 relatives in professional baseball
- 62 had major league relatives active in 2015
- 221 had major league relatives active before 2015
The 72 major league managers and coaches had a total of 124 relatives in professional baseball
- 8 had major league relatives in 2015.
- 17 had major league relatives active before 2015.
The Milwaukee Brewers had two managers and five coaches that represented 22 family relationships in professional baseball.
2015 MLB DRAFT
74 amateur players drafted in 2015 had current or former relatives in professional baseball.
- 55 were sons of pro players, while 25 were brothers
- 46 of the draftees had relatives with major leaguers experience
- 31 of the draftees did not sign pro contracts in 2015
2015 MAJOR LEAGUE DEBUTS
22 players with relatives in baseball made their major league debuts in 2014. 15 of their relatives had major league experience.
The average number of players (major and minor league), managers, and coaches with baseball relatives for the 30 major league organizations was 24.
- The Royals and Red Sox were the organizations with the most relatives with 41 each. The Cubs (9) had the fewest.
- The Orioles (13) had the most 2015 major leaguer roster players with a relative in professional baseball. The Angels, Dodgers and Red Sox each had 12 players.
- The Rockies and Cubs both had the fewest with 3 players.
The 2015 independent baseball leagues had 47 players with relatives in professional baseball.
- 11 of the players were former major leaguers with relatives.
- 27 total relatives had major league experience.
The 2015 Mexican League had 16 players with relatives in professional baseball
- 9 of the players were former major leaguers with relatives.
- 9 total relatives had major league experience.
Miami Marlins outfielder Christian Yelich was thrilled that his younger brother Collin is now in professional baseball. Collin was selected by the Atlanta Braves in the 29th round of this year’s draft and played his first season with the Braves’ entry in the rookie Gulf States League. Christian had always hoped he and his brother could be professional athletes together.
Read more about Christian and Collin Yelich at the link below from The Acorn: