Butch And Sundance
Two local teens joined a U.S. baseball team on a
South American tour this summer
IIN hen Noah Bremen and
Andrew Margolick went
south to Florida for a
baseball camp last De-
cember, they had no idea
it would lead to a trip even further
south the following summer.
While Bremen and Margolick,
both 15, attended the Bucky Dent
baseball camp in Delray Beach, Fla.,
last year, they were told about the an-
nual South American trip for a
selected number of camp attendees.
They were eventually invited and
Both Bremen, a third baseman
who attends West Bloomfield High
School, and Margolick, a pitcher from
North Farmington High, went back to
Delray Beach for two weeks of train-
ing in late July, then traveled with
the team to Caracas, Venezuela, and
the Caribbean island of Aruba.
The starting third baseman,
Bremen began the trip with seven
hits in his first seven at-bats. "I
wasn't as nervous after that, getting
my first hit," he says. "That was real-
ly exciting for me."
None of the Americans had ever
played in front of crowds as large as
those in Venezuela, which takes its
baseball seriously, especially when
competing against Americans.
The Venezuelans "were really ex-
cited," says Margolick: "Their coach
said it was the biggest thing of their
lives — They wanted to beat the
Americans so bad."
The U.S. squad played a pair of
best-of-three series against top
Venezuelan teams — winning five of
six games — then dropped an exhibi-
tion game against a Venezuelan all-
Margolick recalls his first game
action as a relief pitcher. At the start
of the inning "the catcher threw the
ball to second and I just looked up.
The whole stands were packed with
people. They had crowds five times
more thari anyone had ever played
before . . . I was nervous going in, and
when I looked up, it just made me
more nervous. But once I threw the
first pitch I was fine."
Bremen says the competition was
"really good. They had good arms and
they were fast, but they lacked
coaching and fundamentals, like
fielding. They were really anxious at
FRIDAY, OCTOBER,28, 1988
South-of-the-border teammates Noah Bremen and Andrew Margolick.
the plate. They went for a home run
every time. There were no people who
just punched the ball."
The trip was. a homecoming for
Margolick, who lived in Caracas for
three and one-half years, until he was
seven. He had learned Spanish there,
but refused to speak it when he
returned to the U.S. The language
came back when he spoke to the
Venezuelans last summer.
Margolick spoke to Venezuelan
players about "baseball, what they do
for fun, stuff like that . . . They love
everything American. I 'had my
camera at a game; I went to take a
picture of Noah and about 20 little
kids came circling around and tried
to jump in the picture."
The games in Venezuela drew na-
tionwide media attention. Adding to
the major league atmosphere were
post-game autograph sessions.
"We were mobbed," recalls
Margolick. "We signed people's
wrists, people's shirtsleeves, hats and
everything. It was great. I was expec-
ting them to just ask our coach. And
they just circled around us."
Adds Bremen, "It wasn't just lit-
tle kids. Their mothers would come up
and they'd bring baseballs to sign."
Not only did the team receive _
great media attention, but they
discovered that in Venezuela the
media people can literally stop the
"They'll stop the game to take a
picture for a newspaper or a
magazine," says Margolick. "We were
all ready to go out for the last inning
of this big game and this reporter
goes 'Wait.' Our coach (New York
Yankee scout Larry Hoskins) says,
`This is what you've got to do,' so we
all got together to take -a picture."
When Margolick's and Bremen's
names were published in a local
paper, they were invariably misspell-
ed. One Spanish paper reported that
"Maryjah (Margolick) was the pitcher
that came out to control the hitters
and was the winning pitcher. Brennet
(Bremen) was three-for-three with two
The team won one of three games
in Aruba, 20 minutes from Caracas
by plane. Unlike Venezuelans, the
were not all fond of Americans. While
warming up before entering a game,
Margolick recalls, "all these kids yell-
ing at me . . . They would just yell
non-stop. Then when we were leaving
they'd just say 'Stupid American, we
beat you; things like that." Games in
Aruba were broadcast on television
Bremen and Margolick played for
several teams at home this summer.
As freshmen, each made excellent
progress in his high school season.
Bremen played on West Bloomfield's
junior varsity. Margolick started on
the JV — North Farmington does not