All-Star Family Reunion Next for Willson, William Contreras? – NBC Chicago


Contreras All-Star reunion? ’Next step in our dream come true’ originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

Watching Willson Contreras and his little brother, William, deliver hits and poignant moments all afternoon at Wrigley Field on Saturday, “I had this flashback of the Molina family and what they’ve been able to do,” Cubs manager David Ross said.

Consider the changing of the guard complete.

With the Contreras brothers’ first big-league start against each other — the first set of brothers to start at catcher in the same game since Yadi and José Molina in 2014 — Willson and William symbolically, if not officially, ascended to become the first family of MLB catching.

And if Yadi wants to dispute that, maybe William can keep up his surge at the plate for a few more weeks and steal an All-Star bid — something Willson already has all but clinched.

Two brothers in the same All-Star Game?

It’s something Joe and Dom DiMaggio did six times, same as Sandy and Roberto Alomar.

But for all of Yadi’s 10 All-Star appearances, brothers José and Bengie never made one.

“It would be the next step for our dream come true,” Willson said after both brothers played the part throughout the Cubs’ 6-3 victory over the Braves on Saturday.

Willson went 3-for-5 with a double and drove in a run. William singled and doubled.

Willson leads all major-league catchers in OPS (.934), and he and William rank first and third in home runs among players who play mostly catcher with 12 and nine, respectively.

William’s biggest obstacle is he spent more than two weeks in April in the minors before getting his next recall April 28. Despite a 1.026 OPS and a top-six WAR among big-league catchers, William has played only 29 games and lacks the plate appearances to qualify for the league leaders.

But if Chris Morel is deserving of some local All-Star buzz (he is) for his partial season, William Contreras certainly is — especially at a weak offensive position this season.

“I thought about that,” Willson said. “It would be fun. I talked to my family about it. If he started with the team since April, he might have some numbers to go to the All-Star game. But I don’t know how they work.”

A day like Saturday doesn’t hurt, especially with all the media attention on the brothers’ first matchup — not to mention their big combined performance.

“You almost can’t even dream about something like that,” William said in Spanish through the Braves’ interpreter. “But to have both brothers be All-Stars like that it would just be unreal.”

But Willson has dreamed about that. He’s been able to envision big things for his brother since William made his big-league debut in 2020 and then started to put up enough numbers last year to earn a spot on the Braves’ World Series roster.

Willson, who is on the brink of his third All-Star starting nod, said last season he thought William will be even better.

“The way he played in the minors was better than I did,” Willson said then during a conversation with NBC Sports Chicago. “The way that he manages himself with his emotions is better than I do, and that’s something that’s going to help him a lot. That’s why I think he’s going to be better than I am.”

As if to emphasize that point, Willson slammed his bat on the ground after striking out to end the eighth Saturday — with a 6-2 lead and three hits already in the bank.

Whichever brother winds up with the bigger career, only the Molinas in recent generations can match the skills, if not the accomplishments, of the Contreras brothers already — before William even has his first full season under his belt.

They each already have a World Series championship, with William in position for another likely October run with the Braves and Willson expected to get traded into a pennant race by the Aug. 2 deadline.

The Molinas have five — four if you count the 2002 Angels championship José and Bengie shared as teammates as one.

“We only wish that we could play as well as the Molina brothers did,” Willson said during that conversation last year.

Stay tuned the next few weeks as the All-Star selections play out.

“Let’s see what happens,” Willson said. “But it would be fun if we both get to go there, especially with my whole family here.”

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