By STEVE GALLUZZO | Sports Editor
For Tyler and Scott Heineman, more than just three wins were at stake when the San Francisco Giants hosted the Texas Rangers Friday-Sunday at Oracle Park. So too were family bragging rights.
The Palisadian brothers faced each other for the very first time in their Major League Baseball careers and in the end it was Tyler who had the last laugh as the Giants took the series two games to one. Every win is magnified with the 2020 regular season being reduced to 60 games because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Neither Tyler nor Scott started the series opener in which the Giants prevailed 9-2, but Scott got a pinch hit at-bat in the eighth inning and flied out to center.
Before the start of the second game the brothers posed for a photo at home plate with the umpire crew. After the game they traded jerseys so their father could have both to remember the occasion. Tyler started behind the dish for the Giants and batted eighth. He walked in the sixth inning and doubled to deep right in the eighth, eventually scoring the Giants’ final run in a 7-3 victory. Scott started in center field for the Rangers and batted seventh in the lineup. In the ninth, he belted his first home run of the season, a 337-foot blast to right field off of reliever Sam Selman.
Tyler didn’t play in Sunday’s series finale, but Scott again started in center and in his first at-bat in the second he hit a two-run double to deep center and later scored himself. He added a single in the sixth in Texas’ 9-5 win.
Due to social distancing rules no fans were allowed in the ballpark so the brothers’ parents Steve and Kathy were not in attendance, but they knew the day would come when Tyler and Scott sat in opposite dugouts given that each made his club’s 30-man roster.
Tyler, 29, and Scott, 27, both made their major league debuts last season, Scott as an outfielder with Texas in August and Tyler as a pinch hitter with the Miami Marlins one month later. They became the 396th set of siblings to play in the majors. Tyler signed with San Francisco in January.
Tyler and Scott grew up on Radcliffe Avenue in the Via Bluffs and were teammates one season in the Pacific Palisades Baseball Association before switching to the Santa Monica Little League.
They faced each other in the minor leagues and before that, in 2012, their college teams clashed when Tyler was a senior catcher at UCLA and Scott was a freshman third baseman for Oregon. That time Scott’s Ducks took two out of three games from the Bruins at Jackie Robinson Stadium.
This page is available to subscribers. Click here to sign in or get access.