Skip to content
Jaelyn Bracamonte

Jaelyn Bracamonte proudly represents Venezuela

Astros bullpen catcher Javier Bracamonte cheers for daughter Jaelyn

Jaelyn Bracamonte has been around some of the greatest Venezuelan athletes since she could walk. Early in life, she would go to the Astros’ clubhouse in the offseason and sit while her dad Javier Bracamonte helped players work out.

Through her father Javier, the Astros’ bullpen catcher, Jaelyn has developed a familial bond with former American League MVP Jose Altuve and several other Venezuelan Astros from the past like Richard Hidalgo and Marwin Gonzalez.

Jaelyn, who was born in Houston, was enthralled last year in Miami when her good friends Altuve and Luis Garcia and her dad wore their Venezuelan uniforms during the World Baseball Classic. She embraced the passion Venezuelans had for their national team.

While in Miami that spring, Jaelyn Bracamonte also took her first steps toward Venezuela and the country’s beloved Vino Tinto women’s national soccer team. The 5-foot-8 goalkeeper from Houston area high school Clear Lake trained in Florida with a coach who recommended her to the Venezuelan national team coach.

Jaelyn Bracamonte finds soccer home

Jaelyn was then invited to try out last November, prompting her to visit her father’s country for the first time to secure a Venezuelan passport.

The “WBC is another way for athletes to represent their nationality,” Jaelyn Bracamonte said. “While I was there I was able to see how passionate the fans were for the sport and their country 

“It’s amazing how many people come together from around the States to support athletes’ accomplishments. I’m grateful to be one of those athletes that represent their nationality and to experience the journey.”


Astros make right move, extend icon Jose Altuve

Yainer Diaz packs punch calling Astros no-hitter

Ronel Blanco rewards his mother’s faith with no-hitter

Jaelyn, 17, is currently in Ecuador at the South American Championship with the Venezuelan U-20 women’s national team. She’s the youngest of three goalkeepers on Venezuela’s roster for the CONMEBOL tournament, which will decide the South American representatives for the upcoming U-20 Women’s World Cup.

Javier Bracamonte

Perhaps it’s fitting that Jaelyn is on the roster with Altuve’s cousin Mariangela Jimenez, who plays collegiately at William Carey University. Jaelyn has known Altuve since he made his big league debut in 2011. Altuve has seen her grow up.

She has also seen him develop into arguably the greatest Astros star of all time with a franchise record eight All-Star berths and two World Series titles.

Ties to Jose Altuve

“Altuve is like my uncle,” she says. “I see him for family gatherings like for Christmas or New Year’s. He had always been overlooked coming up because of his size. Altuve has a really good work ethic and he’s determined. 

“I’m determined too. I just like winning.”

Jaelyn began playing soccer at 5 years old. She left the sport after a few years. Then in middle school she tried soccer again. Jaelyn’s stepmother Katie Bracamonte, who played as a goalkeeper at Incarnate Word University in San Antonio, suggested goalkeeping. 

Jaelyn Bracamonte

“My stepmom said, ‘I think you have great reflexes,’” Jaelyn said. “She started working with me and teaching me all the technical aspects. Then I started doing training with coaches. …

“I had to say a lot of work was put in. It wasn’t based on talent, honestly. Talent can only take you so far.” 

Jaelyn began playing club soccer in eighth grade with the Houston Dash, which eventually was renamed HTX. She eventually moved over to the Rise Academy team. After learning the importance of setting goals from her father, Jaelyn set a few goals before high school.

Jaelyn wanted to make the varsity roster at Clear Lake as a freshman. She accomplished that goal, but she didn’t play much because of an injury.  Then she split time with a senior goalkeeper as a sophomore before earning all the playing time in the playoffs that season.

Jaelyn Bracamonte jumped at Venezuelan call

She missed the UIL playoffs this season while attending her second tryout for Venezuela’s U-20 national team in Venezuela in March.

“They were like, ‘We need you to come out again to Venezuela,” she says. “I was here for a week by myself for the first time. I was nervous at first. Once you’re there, the nerves go away.”

Katie visited Jaelyn in Ecuador for a few days, but Javier has been unable to be with her while he works as the Astros’ bullpen catcher. Javier Bracamonte has been the Astros’ bullpen catcher since 2001. He was first brought to the Astros by Richard Hidalgo.

Over time, Javier became a favorite of the Astros’ pitching staff. One year, Roger Clemens flew him to the All-Star Game. Alex Bregman invited Javier to pitch to him during the 2018 Home Run Derby as part of the All-Star Game festivities.

Beloved Astros figure

Many Astros lean on him, but the Venezuelans have been especially close to him. Javier knows their culture, their food and their interests. 

Javier Bracamonte is also a diligent worker, which is why he has never attended one of his daughter’s regular season soccer games. He has seen some of her preseason games, but he’s usually already in West Palm Beach, Fla., for spring training during the heart of the high school soccer season in Texas.

“Fun fact, my dad has never missed a day of work,” Jaelyn says with pride. “He says the first day he’ll miss is the day I graduate from high school. I know he wishes he could come to every game, but that’s not realistic. I keep that in my mind.”

Javier is constantly raving about Jaelyn. He’s often talking about her latest soccer exploits. Jaelyn, a junior, is committed to play soccer at the University of Texas – San Antonio.

Jaelyn Bracamonte made memorable visit

She visited her father’s childhood home last November for the first time. Jaelyn marveled when she saw her dad’s old bedroom in Caracas. His youth baseball trophies are still where he left them more than two decades ago at the home on Calle La Vereda in Avenida Principal.

Jaelyn Bracamonte

Javier Bracamonte served as a bullpen coach for Venezuela in the 2023 WBC. A little more than a year later, Jaelyn Bracamonte is representing Venezuela.

“I’m extremely proud of Jaelyn and the work that she’s put in to be able to be where she’s at right now in a short amount of time,” Javier Bracamonte says. “She’s representing millions of people in Venezuela.

“She’s representing me, her grandparents and her family there. It’s more than just our last name. There’s a lot of people behind this supporting her.”

Stay in the Loop

Get the Our Esquina Email Newsletter

By submitting your email, you are agreeing to receive additional communications and exclusive content from Our Esquina. You can unsubscribe at any time.