SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Norma Ramos used to worry that if she ever saw her sons, Heliot and Henry, play in the Majors, she’d be forced to traverse the contentious battle lines of the Giants-Dodgers rivalry.
“My mom used to say, ‘If you play against each other in the big leagues, what am I going to do when I go to a stadium? Wear a Dodgers jersey one day and a Giants jersey the next?’” Henry recalled in Spanish.
She won’t have to choose sides anymore.
Over the winter, Henry left the Dodgers organization to sign a Minor League deal with the Giants, who selected Heliot in the first round of the 2017 Draft, putting the Ramos brothers on the same team for the first time in their lives. The siblings are seven years apart and had never shared an outfield before Sunday.
That changed in the sixth inning of the Giants’ game against the Rangers at Scottsdale Stadium. Heliot, who was called up from Minor League camp for the day, entered the game to play center field and was flanked by Henry in right, fulfilling a long-held dream for the Ramos family.
"For me, it’s incredible,” Henry, 26, said. “I’ve seen him grow up, and I’ve always wanted to play alongside him.”
“He’s always helped me grow and taught me to play baseball,” Heliot, 19, said. “I learned everything from him. He’s like my dad.”
Henry, a fifth-round pick of the Red Sox in 2010, batted .297 with an .817 OPS, 10 home runs and 58 RBIs in 106 games with Triple-A Oklahoma City in 2018, but he became a Minor League free agent at the end of last season and began looking for opportunities with other clubs. When president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi -- another former member of the Dodgers -- called, Henry immediately jumped at the chance to join the Giants and compete for an outfield job.
“I was like, ‘Wow. Everything we’ve wanted is here,’” Henry said. “There are opportunities if you work hard. I might be able to help the Major League team, and beyond that, I have [Heliot] here in the same organization. It would be nice if we’re able to play together in the future."
Asked to compare their playing styles, Henry said he shares similar qualities with his younger brother, though he acknowledged that Heliot has the edge when it comes to power.
“He’s stronger,” Henry said. “He’s a power hitter. But everything else I’d say is the same. Good defense. We play hard. We have the heart of a warrior, as I like to say.”
Heliot, who is ranked the Giants’ No. 2 prospect by MLB Pipeline, experienced a slow start with Class A Augusta last year, batting just .204 with a .601 OPS and two homers through his first 25 games, but he grew stronger as the season wore on. He finished the season hitting .245 with a .709 OPS and 11 home runs over 124 games and is hoping to begin the 2019 campaign with Class A Advanced San Jose.
“I felt way better at the end because I kept learning,” Heliot said. “I hit better my last month.”
Henry, who has spent the last nine seasons in the Minors, said he thought it was good for Heliot to struggle early and learn to push though the hard times.
“Every ballplayer is going to slump, so it’s good that he started that way last year, running up against a wall,” Henry said. “That’s how he’ll learn to pick himself back up.”