When they take the field, when another baseball game begins, they’re not just teammates, fellow Beavers on the Tenino High School’s baseball team. They’re also brothers.
And that link, that blood relationship of the Brewer and Chambers brothers on the Beavers’ baseball team makes this a special season. For Spencer and Logan Brewer and for Coulson and Dalton Chambers, it’s a season they’ll never forget.
But this is a sibling rivalry without the negatives. Rather than simply trying to outdo, they’re pulling together. Not pulling apart.
“They both get along so well,” said Conner Hogue, Tenino’s head baseball coach. “They both have good relationships. It’s fun.”
Hogue has a unique perspective on this brother-teammate relationship. He played baseball with his brother while attending Adna High School. Hogue remembers his experience having a different twist.
“It’s not like my brother,” Hogue said with a smile. “My brother and I would go at it at practice. These guys, no way.” Rather than argue, the Brewer and Chambers brothers work together.
“They play catch together, work together,” Hogue said. “They talk through things together if someone makes a mistake. Spencer is the funny one because he’s hard on Logan. And Logan takes it and listens like a little brother. Coulson and Dalton are pretty quiet kids. They’re relationship is more even keel. They play catch together or talk. They’re both good relationships.”
For Coulson, a senior and starting right fielder, having a younger brother on the team is a positive. “It’s awesome,” Coulson said. “It’s a great time. It’s the best thing ever. I love my brother.”
It makes both pairs of brothers more competitive, too, pushing themselves a little harder. They don’t want to be out done by their brother.
“He’s always pushing me,” said Dalton, a sophomore and part time starter in the infield. “It’s the best thing ever.”
For Spencer Brewer, a senior and starting catcher, having a younger brother on the team gives him one more responsibility – coaching. “I don’t like it when he screws up,” Spencer said with a chuckle.
And Spencer is always ready with constructive criticism. If Logan wasn’t his brother and he made a fielding error or struck out, the advice and tips wouldn’t come.
“I’m always trying to build,” Spencer said. “Always trying to make him a better player.”
For Dalton Chambers, having an older brother on the team gives him a role model, an example to follow. “I’ve always looked up to him,” Dalton said. “He’s always been my model of how to play, how to have good sportsmanship, everything. I’ve always looked up to him. Learned from him.”
Don’t be fooled, though, there’s always been sibling rivalry, that desire to outdo his brother.
“There’s always been that,” Dalton said. “Wanting to be a step above him. I haven’t yet had a chance, but I’m still working at it. There’s always been that drive from my brother.”
However, it’s been a constructive influence. “Oh yeah, more constructive,” Dalton said. “He’s always pushing me. He’s got a way of pushing me and we don’t really fight, we just make each other better – we push each other to be better. Sometimes it may look like fighting.”
Rather than fighting, Coulson called it motivation. “It’s all about getting better,” he shared. “It’s not about putting down, it’s about picking him up. After a strikeout, there’s always the encouraging word.”
Coulson sometimes offers some advice, a better approach. “Fix what you didn’t do last time,” Coulson said.
This sibling rivalry pushes these two sets of brothers to get better. But Hogue said the Chambers brothers are quieter about their rivalry.
“They’re pretty chill kids,” Hogue said. “But, the Brewers? Logan and Spencer will definitely jabber a little bit about who’s going to do this and who’s going to do that. We get some talks on the bus about things that might happen between the two. Spencer is pretty hard on Logan but it’s pretty comical. A couple of the coaches have brothers so we’ve experienced the same thing.”
For Hogue, it’s a been there done that moment.
“It is an interesting dynamic, but all the brothers get along so well,” Hogue said. “They push each other in a positive way. Nothing too crazy.”
After winning the district title last year, Hogue and his team are facing an unexpectedly tough opponent this season – the weather. So far they’ve had seven rainouts and the rain postponements are backing up the schedule, forcing them to play five games in a week.
However, Hogue has been impressed with this year’s team. “They’re really a coachable group,” he said. “Probably the most coachable group I’ve had in four years. They listen really well and they are really active. I’m really happy with where we’re at.”
It’s a team that responds to coaching and advice which the coaches how will see them through the tough season.
“It’s a fun team with a lot of good, fun personalities,” Hogue said. “We know how to have fun while we’re playing the game. I like these battles and adversity because that will pay off in the end.”