After the 2012 American Legion baseball season, brothers Brandon and Conner Eller went their separate baseball ways.
Conner embarked on the next level to Crowder College while Brandon took an assistant coaching position at Valley View High School in Jonesboro where the Blazers made a state tournament appearance under head coach Josh Allison.
Last week, the two met up in Paragould when the North Little Rock Colts took on Paragould on their way to Alton, Ill. Brandon played the role of spectator although he admitted that he missed coaching little brother as well as three others.
“I had to turn my coaching mind off,” Brandon said after the game.
Brandon also said that it was bizarre to see them in an old foe’s uniform.
“It was funny seeing them in that uniform,” Brandon said. “North Little Rock has always been our rival.”
After the Ellers left, Sylvan Hills dropped out of the American Legion program in favor of playing an extended high school summer schedule.
Though Conner was disappointed in the outcome of his sixth inning, he was happy that his brother was in the stands.
Conner called the first year of his Crowder career as “shaky” working mostly midweek games and finishing with a 1-3 record.
“Hopefully next year I’ll either be a weekend starter or a go-to guy out of the bullpen,” Conner said.
Though the loss stung both player and spectator, the post game meeting was all smiles.
Conner said his hope is that after next season he can move on to Arkansas State. That being the case, the Eller brothers won’t have to wait for paths to cross to be in the same baseball park.