Throughout the course of USA Baseball history, roughly 3,000 athletes have participated as a member of one or more national teams. It’s a rare and prestigious honor to be selected to represent your country, and even rarer for a pair of siblings to do it together. On this National Sibling Day, we thought we would share some of the most well-known family pairs to have donned the red, white and blue.
Justin & Melvin Upton
Justin and Melvin Upton were two highly touted prospects in their respective draft classes, with both having played for the USA Baseball 18U National Team in the midst of their prospect hype.
Melvin, the oldest of the two, was a member of the 2001 18U National Team and was showing that he was every bit deserving of the hype, batting .462 with six RBIs and three stolen bases as the starting center fielder for Team USA, helping to lead them to a silver medal at the COPABE Pan American Junior Championships, finishing with a final record of 9-2.
In 2002, Melvin was selected second overall by Tampa Bay. He would go on to play for over a decade in the show, including a stop in Atlanta, where he would team up with his little brother, Justin.
Justin Upton, who was one of the top young prospects in the nation, was selected to participate with the 18U National Team in 2004. If there were any questions about Justin’s abilities, they were quickly answered after his time with USA Baseball, where he hit .417/.444/.875 with a home run and two stolen bases, helping Team USA to finish with a 4-2 overall record at the 2004 IBAF World Championships.
Upton was snagged with the very first pick of the 2005 Draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks, making his MLB debut just two years later at the ripe age of 19. For six seasons, Upton was the face of the franchise in Arizona, where he accumulated 739 hits and 108 home runs all by the age of 24. He has since gone on to play for the Atlanta Braves, San Diego Padres, Detroit Tigers, and Los Angeles Angels, and is still active in the league today.
Joe & Tyson Ross
Joe and Tyson Ross have both had success on the mound at the Major League level, but before they were pitching for their respective big-league ball clubs, they were representing Team USA in the very same year, albeit on different teams.
Tyson Ross suited up for USA Baseball three times in his career, as a member of the 2004 and 2005 18U National Teams, as well as the 2007 Collegiate National Team. Tyson was a crucial member of the 2006 18U National Team, pitching them all the way to a COPABE Pan Am “AAA” Championships silver medal and 7-1 overall record. With the collegiate team, Tyson tossed 43.2 and posted a 0.82 ERA. His performance with Team USA solidified his draft stock, helping him go in the second round of the 2008 MLB Draft to the Oakland Athletics. Tyson is currently enjoying his ninth year in Major League Baseball as a member of the Detroit Tigers.
Tyson’s younger brother, Joe, played for USA Baseball in 2007 as a member of the 14U National Team. In his time with Team USA, Joe did not allow a single run and also led the team in batting average at .750, helping them to finish undefeated and claim the 2007 COPABE Pan Am “A” Championships gold medal.
Joe was drafted by the San Diego Padres in the first round of the 2011 Draft and, after being traded to the Washington Nationals in the offseason of 2014, made his Major League Debut on June 6, 2015. He is currently an active pitcher on the Nationals’ 25-man roster.
Chase & Travis d’Arnaud
The d’Arnaud brothers were both members of USA Baseball’s Professional National Team in back-to-back years, with Chase, who was then a part of the Pirates system, participating in 2010, and Travis, then a catcher in the Blue Jays system, playing in 2011.
Chase d’Arnuad was looking to help Team USA qualify the next year’s professional team for the XXXVIII World Cup, and was a big reason why they were ultimately successful, finishing fourth on the team in batting average at .321, while also accumulating 4 RBIs and two stolen bases as a middle infielder. He helped the 2010 team finish 11-1-1 and qualify for the following year’s world cup.
Playing for Team USA a year later, Travis was on the on the Professional National Team in 2011 as they participated in the World Cup that his older brother helped them qualify for. Travis played the majority of his games behind the dish, fielding a perfect .1000 and driving in two RBIs while slugging .375 to help Team USA capture a silver medal at the 2011 Pan American Games.
The two brothers are still playing in the big-leagues today, with Travis entering his seventh season with the New York Mets and Chase playing in his eighth season as a member of the San Francisco Giants
Jemile & Rickie Weeks
One of the elder sibling combos to have played for USA Baseball, Jemile and Rickie Weeks both suited up for the Collegiate National Team, with Rickie participating in 2001 and Jemile in 2006, both as middle infielders.
Rickie batted .277/.394/.386 with two home runs and eight swiped bags as a member of the 2001 team. His standout performance with USA Baseball, along with his stellar junior season at Southern University that resulted in him receiving the 2003 Golden Spikes Award, earned him a premier spot in the 2003 MLB Draft, as he was taken second overall by the Milwaukee Brewers. Weeks would go on to have a polished big-league career, batting .246 with 161 homers in 14 seasons.
Rickie’s younger brother, Jemile, would follow in his footsteps just five years later, playing with the 2006 Collegiate National Team. In 30 games for Team USA, Jemile hit an impressive .343 with four home runs, leading the United States to a gold medal win over Chinese Taipei at the 2006 FISU World Championships.
Jemile was drafted 12th overall by the Oakland Athletics in the 2008 MLB Draft and he would enjoy six years in the show, having last played in 2016 as a member of the San Diego Padres.