07/24/2010 12:46 PM
WAREHAM ---- Children often aspire to follow in their parents’ footsteps. For Wareham’s Tyler Bream (Liberty), son of former major leaguer Sid Bream, his path began before he could even remember it.
“Everyone always asks about the first time I picked up a ball,” Tyler said. “I can’t even tell you because I’ve always been around the game.”
Born in October, 1989, Tyler was immediately welcomed into a baseball family. Sid had an 11-year stint in the majors with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates, Atlanta Braves and Houston Astros. Though he was never able to raise the Commissioner’s Trophy, he played in two World Series with Atlanta in 1991 and 1992.
“Tyler was there when he was very young and was able to watch me play in the big leagues,” Sid said.
Tyler was an infant when his father became an Atlanta hero. The Braves trailed Pittsburgh 2-1 in the bottom of the ninth inning of Game 7 of the 1992 National League Championship Series. The bases were loaded with two outs, and Bream was on second base representing the winning run. Francisco Cabrera cracked a single to left field, and Bream, never known for his speed, barely beat the throw of Barry Bonds to send the Braves to the World Series.
Exposure to the game at an early age is one possible explanation for the drive and passion that has propelled Tyler to the top of the Cape League stats. In 31 games with the Gatemen, he’s tied for the league lead with 19 RBI.
It is no surprise that he has had success at the plate, since Sid added hitting coach to his resume following his major league career. But Sid pointed out that he has given Tyler room to develop on his own as a player.
“We talk quite a bit (about his performances) and I’m very thankful he’ll give me a shout,” Sid said. “But at the same time, he’s trying to find his own way as far as his swing is concerned. He doesn’t want to hear his dad say ‘You’re doing this or that.’”
But after watching Tyler go 0-for-3 against his former Cape team, Falmouth, Sid joked: “Sitting here watching him tonight I’ve seen some things that we’re going to have a talk about and hopefully straighten them out for the next game.”
Regardless of a bad game here and there, both Breams realize the importance of having the opportunity to play on the Cape.
“When he got down to his school (last fall) the coach told him he would have the chance to go up to a team on the Cape and I said ‘Oh great!’” Sid said, beaming. “It worked out that he could come up to Wareham. I was ecstatic when I heard he had the chance to play.”
Though Sid played for the Commodores in 1980, he was not picky about what team Tyler joined. The Cape is just another chapter for Tyler, who also followed in Sid’s footsteps by attending Liberty.
“A lot of people ask why I didn’t go to a bigger school,” Tyler said. “I just wanted to be at a Christian school and that’s where my dad went.”
Tyler is also encouraged by another Flames player, cousin Doug Bream.
“(Doug) is a pretty good hitter. His numbers were better than mine (freshmen year), so I’ve got give Round One to him,” Tyler said.
But Tyler evened the score last spring by leading his team with 57 RBI and hitting .357, both third highest in the Big South Conference.
As Tyler comes to his halfway point on the Cape, Sid looks forward to his son following the path he blazed.
“I just hope everything else plays out the same and that he has an opportunity to play minor league and, hopefully, major league baseball at some point in time,” Sid said. “That would be a dream for him.”