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The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Dreamcatcher; City College catcher looks to fill his father’s cleats
Brett Bello. Photo by Dianne Rose | Guest photographer | [email protected]

Valerie Lizarraga 
Guest Writer

Babe Ruth, Bo Jackson and Barry Bonds all started as just boys with a dream. City College baseball player Brett Bello shares that dream — to one day play the sport he loves in front of thousands of fans.

Bello’s 15-year-long baseball journey has continued most of his life. Baseball isn’t just a sport to athletes like Bello. To him, baseball is a part of who he is, baseball is his dream, baseball is his life. 

It is a gloomy spring afternoon, and the smell of baseball is in the air. The young men on the City College baseball team are there to win. Diverse, determined and destined. Many share the same dream as Bello.

Bello remembers his family cheering for him as a child, shaking in his cleats and swinging for the Dixon Little League. He remembers swinging as hard as he could. As a young boy, he reminded himself to never lose focus on the ball. 

“It’s something I knew I always wanted to do,” says Bello, a catcher. “It’s fun for me. Even at 5 years old, I loved it.” 

A lot has changed since his first game in the little leagues, but one thing has remained the same: staying focused. Now 20 years old and 6 feet tall, Bello is no longer that young boy. He is no longer nervous to play or anxious to swing. He is now a redshirt freshman, ready to suit up and get his turn to play. 

Bello is no stranger to hard work. Working toward his dream for the last 15 years has not been an easy walk in the ballpark. He has won, and he has lost. More often times than he likes to admit, he has felt the urge to quit. But there’s something that keeps Bello going.
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“My family helps me through it,” he says. “Without them I don’t know if I would still be playing. I know I wouldn’t be where I am at right now. My dad is my biggest fan and supporter.”

Bello’s father, Brian Bello, once played baseball for City College. Brian’s dream was cut short after a serious injury ended his career. He is now his son’s biggest inspiration and mentor. Baseball is now the dream he shares with his son. 

“I love watching him play,” Brian says. “He is special, and I know everyone says that about their kid, but he’s different. I know he can make it.”

So how far away is Bello from “making it”? According to statistics from the Huffington Post and The National Collegiate Athletic Association, about one  in every 200 high school baseball players will be drafted to the major leagues. That is 0.5 percent. But as a college athlete, Bello’s chances are even better.

Though Bello hopes to make baseball his career one day, he enjoys a sense of unity and family from being on the City College team. He says the coaches don’t only focus on making the players better; they try to make them all-around better people. 

“We’re here to help shape these young men, on and off the field,” says Deskaheh Bomberry, City College’s baseball pitching coach and recruiting coordinator.

Bello’s experiences with City College have left him with memories he says he’ll carry with him forever.

“I just want to keep playing for as long as I can,” he says. “Of course, my dream would be to play in the MLB. That’s been my dream for a long time. Traveling the country and making money doing what I love doesn’t sound like a bad life to me. It might not come true, but I’m still going to try.” 

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