NEW YORK ( Associated Press) — A family reunion at Citi Field.
New York Mets close Edwin Diaz and his brother, Cincinnati Reds rookie reliever Alexis Diaz exchange lineup cards at home plate before Tuesday’s game between the teams.
For the second straight night with several family members watching and wearing the two brothers split Mets/Red shirts, Edwin and Alexis shook hands with the umpiring crew before hugging each other.
With a 1.39 ERA, 26 saves and 91 strikeouts in 45 1/3 innings – not to mention a popular entry song – older brother Edwin, 28, is enjoying a prime season. Alexis, 25, pulled the Reds out of Spring Training and is 3-1 with a 1.94 ERA and four saves in his first major league action.
“It’s unbelievable,” said his father, Edwin, during the second innings. “Kids started playing at age 5, age 6. Their dream came true.”
Dad said he got the idea for split shirts from Kyle and Corey Seeger’s mother, who produced similar split shirts when Kyle’s Seattle Mariners and Corey’s Los Angeles Dodgers played against each other, when Edwin Diaz and Kyle Seeger was a teammate in 2018.
“I said, ‘One day, I’m going to be like this,'” the elder Diaz said. “When Alexis came into the big leagues, I said, ‘I’m going to get that shirt too.'”
After swapping at home plate, the brothers posed with the umpires and then hugged. This was the second time this season that the Diaz brothers exchanged lineup cards. He did the same before the first match of the series between the teams in Cincinnati on July 4.
“It’s a great moment for his family,” Mets manager Buck Showalter said Monday night. “Can you imagine how proud they are?”
Reds manager David Bell was particularly moved by the midseason Diaz family reunion. Bell is a third-generation big league player whose late brother, Mike, played with Cincinnati while David was with the Mariners in 2000.
“I think the best part of it is not playing against each other, it’s actually crossing paths in a busy major league schedule where you get lucky and your team plays each other,” Bell said. And you get to spend time together.” “Everything else on the field is great, but away from the ballpark, it’s best, because it’s your brother and you don’t see each other very often, especially when you’re a major league baseball player.”
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