Will Orthodox MLB draft pick Elie Kligman's younger brother follow him?

Publication titleJerusalem Post, The: Web Edition Articles (Israel)
But virtually no one knows about Kligman's younger brother — who has the potential to be as good or better than his sibling

Ari Kligman is now a high school senior, and while it doesn't appear he will be drafted this year, he is beginning to attract attention from a number of Division I colleges. (His brother Elie chose to refine his skills at Wake Forest University, after being drafted No. 593 overall by the Washington Nationals.)

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While Elie is primarily a catcher, Ari, who doesn't turn 18 until the fall, is sizing up to be a pitching prospect. He can currently hit up to 89 miles an hour on the radar gun, and by next year, he's hoping to top 90, to go along with a devastating curveball that could turn the heads of major league scouts. He joined his brother at the advanced Wake Forest pitching lab in the fall, to analyze his mechanics and make them more efficient.

A main takeaway: gain some muscle weight. Most MLB pitchers these days are over six feet tall. Ari is now 6-foot-2, 190 pounds — after gaining 20 pounds over the past year.

"They say mass is gas. The more you weigh, the harder you throw generally," Ari told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

Ari and Elie are very close, born just 20 months apart. Their sibling rivalry is less hierarchical than some families.

"It's very much a picking on each other kind of relationship," Ari said. "That's how I think we motivate each other. We make fun of each other. [But] we hope each other does really well."

In their offseasons, Ari pitches to Elie, and they dream of becoming only the second major league Jewish sibling pitcher-catcher battery — in 1960, the Dodgers' Larry Sherry pitched to Norm Sherry. (Since 1900, there have been four other sets of Jewish brothers in the majors besides the Sherrys, most in the earlier part of the 20th century: Sydney and Andy Cohen; Erskine and Sam Mayer; Lou and Harry Rosenberg; and Ike and Harry Danning.)

But that won't happen on Shabbat. "It's not the way me and Elie do it. We're not going to play on Shabbos," Ari said.

While the other Orthodox MLB draftee Jacob...

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