Three brothers leave their marks on Talawanda baseball

Blake Deterage (left) and brother Trevor keep the family dynasty going with THS baseball.

Photo by Josie Cappel

Blake Deterage (left) and brother Trevor keep the family dynasty going with THS baseball.

By Edward Orzech and Josie Cappel

Baseball is more than just a game. It’s a lifestyle. It’s getting up before sunrise to ride the bus to your next game. It can be both the hollow feeling of failure after an 0-4 day at the plate and the flood of dopamine that fills you after a game winning hit. 

For some, it’s even more than that. It’s family. And for a select few, maybe even a dynasty. 

Three members of the Detherage family, Trevor, 23; Clayton, 20; and Blake,17, have grown up hooked on the highs of the game, with each finding their way onto the varsity Talawanda Brave baseball team.

Current Brave junior catcher Blake Detherage credits that family bond with making him a better player. 

“(Practicing with my brothers) made me work hard because I’m the shortest and the smallest,” Detherage said. “It’s proven with all my brothers, no matter how tall, small you are, you can play college baseball.”

Trevor Detherage walked on at Wabash Valley College to play college ball after his time with Talawanda and middle brother, Clayton, currently plays at Cerro Coso Community College in California.

Now it’s Blake’s turn to complete the trilogy. He said he’s already contacted a few college coaches to gauge his options. 

Despite the on the field successes, the Detherages’ baseball story hasn’t been without its challenges. 

Blake has battled a number of injuries during his career. It started in eighth grade when he pulled his collarbone off his sternum. The injury was so close to his neck that doctors were unable to perform surgery. Doctors did perform surgery on his hand during his sophomore year after he shattered it playing football. 

“It helped me grow, it helped me slow down the game and watch it from a different perspective, then be able to apply it to my own game,” Blake said. 

Meanwhile, older brother Trevor struggled early at Wabash Valley after getting hit in the face with a ball and suffering a concussion. Following his recovery, he started taking swings with his former Talawanda baseball coach Tim Reed. 

“When he first came here, I was his guy,” Trevor said. “We created a really good bond.”

In 2019, Reed suffered a heart attack while on his way to the high school and died at age 57.

“I remember getting a call ‘cause we had morning lift that day at 6, got done at 7, was getting ready to go to class, and I got that call and it was just rough that whole day,” Trevor recalled. 

Trevor said Reed was a big part of his decision to remain involved in the game by becoming a coach.

“He passed away, and I was really hoping to coach with him when I got done with baseball,” Trevor said. “And that was really what got me started with coaching.” 

But Trevor didn’t have a place to coach. Fortunately, younger brother Blake’s summer ball team was in need of help which allowed them to continue their respective baseball careers together. 

“It was fun, it was something I really enjoyed. And I was like coaching may be more for me than actually playing,” Trevor said.

Three Detherage brothers have taken the baseball field for Talawanda. Photo by Josie Cappel

Now Trevor is an assistant coach back at Talawanda, helping guide Trevor and his Brave teammates. 

Blake and Trevor share an even closer relationship due to their shared position: Catcher. It’s the most brutal of baseball positions. Catchers suffer the pain of being pelted by misplaced pitches, foul tips and body checks from collisions at the plate.

Maybe that’s what keeps the Detherages so close. Pain and family. 

 “The Detherages . . . all bring athleticism, but more than that, they bring an attitude and desire to win, and to win as a team. They are hard-nosed but ethical and kind,” Talawanda baseball coach Matt Lykins said. 

The siblings have played sports at the high school and have contributed to their respective teams in different ways. Yet at the end of the day, they are family.

“I am especially impressed at how they can separate their roles of coach, player and family. They can talk on the field, motivate each other, then share a car ride home and leave it at practice or the game,” Lykins said. 

Blake and his Talawanda Brave teammates have a 5-3 (2-1 SWOC) record and host Ross High School April 15 and Fairfield High School April 16.