One thing every baseball player will tell you is that their teammates are more than that, they are family. And it is easy to see why. You spend nearly everyday with these guys for six months of the season. Now, you may not like every teammate you come across, just like you probably don't enjoy the company of everyone of your family members but they're still there for you when you need someone. You may not be best mates with your centre fielder but he will put his body on the line and lay out for a ball for you. Just like a good family member, they are there for you.
Recently a teammate I have played with for each of the last three seasons decided to hang up his cleats and retire. One day he woke up, made a few phone calls to the appropriate people and just like that he was in a car and on his way home. My initial reaction to this was shock. I mean, its not everyday that a teammate decides his playing days are over at the age of 25, but it does happen.
It doesn't really hit you that one of your teammates, one of your family members, isn't coming back until you're standing in the outfield during batting practise where he used to roam. A part of you is happy for him, hoping he is happy and at peace with his decision but then there is the part of you that is selfish and wishing your teammate, your brother was still there with you.
There have been a few teammates I've had to say "see you later" to over the last few months. Whether it be a release or a retirement. Those "see you laters" are very optimistic because as much as you wish you could see them again, it is usually a goodbye and farewell. I am generally a pretty positive person, and like to look on the bright side and all I know, is that baseball is a funny game and it can take you to funny places, so you never know when you may run into your brother again.