Molinas: ‘Inspiring, thrilling’ watching the Contreras brothers originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
ST. LOUIS. Cubs catcher Wilson Contreras and his younger brother William are not the only people in baseball who support William to join Wilson as a National League All-Star this year.
“That would be amazing,” said Bengi Molina, an older brother in baseball’s catcher royale.
“I’ve always thought about it,” said Molina, who now hosts a radio show for the Cardinals’ younger brother Yadi. “It was something in our heads. Winning championships together is something special. Jose and I did it. Coaching Yadi [as a member of the Cards’ staff] and almost winning with him in ’13 – all those moments.
“But can you imagine this – the All-Star Game?” Bengi said.
Wilson, who won the Cubs World Series catcher as a rookie in 2016, is expected to receive his third career pick as a National League starter to play next month at Dodger Stadium. William, a 24-year-old Braves catcher of the second year, is second in fan voting among NL-nominated hitters.
“I mean, they went crazy when they played each other,” Bengi said of Contreras’ first Cubs-Braves game last week at Wrigley Field. “So now you’ve teamed them up for the All-Star Game, it’s super awesome.”
This is the only thing that the three who caught Molinas never achieved.
Benga, Jose’s middle brother, and baby Yadi each have two World Series rings, including the 2002 Angels championship, which was shared by Bengi and Jose. They have 11 combined golden gloves (nine for Yadi, two for Benga).
Yadi, who will most likely be out of next month’s game due to a knee injury, has all 10 Molina All-Star contenders.
It’s probably a long way off before William makes the All-Star team this year.
But the changing of the guard in the family MLB trap business is definitely happening.
And will the Contreras brothers live up to the bar set by the Molina brothers, Molina are enjoying the show for now, if not the comparisons.
“I don’t think that’s fair,” Bengi said. “I don’t think it’s fair to them. I don’t think this is fair for us.
“I think these two guys that I saw are very, very talented,” he added. “They are really strong kids. They seem to be very close-knit, family. This is a strong person. … Just to look at them. You don’t see so much these days.
“It is very unusual for us to see this, very encouraging. Very interesting for me. Every time I see [Willson]man, this guy has so many talents, it’s unbelievable. I never had half of his talent.”
Wilson, who is expected to be traded within two weeks of the All-Star Game (if not before the game), has been in the big leagues for six years and a week. William made his debut to open the 2020 pandemic season by playing four games before returning to the 52-game rookie season last year.
Bengi said he thinks it’s too early to start comparing two sets of brothers who have historically rare combined success in large companies.
After all, every year since 1998, Molina has won the majors – and at least once in the playoffs – 14 of the last 20. ), saying it would be his last season.
For now, according to Benga, he just enjoys what the Contreras brothers are doing.
“I like it,” he said. Because I was there.
And he’s backing the chance for Wilson and William to split the club on the same team, even if it’s only for one game – in part because he said he doesn’t expect them to ever be on the same team during the season.
“It’s not something negative. They’re just good,” he said. “They’re both #1 catchers.”
Like everyone else, Bengi knows, after a 13-year career in the big leagues that was less than any of his brothers, how rare family success is.
“What our family did, like the Molina family, I always said, ‘When Yadi retires and we play dominoes at home or have fun in the pool, it will come up how great we had a career,'” Bengi said. “But now Yadi is finishing. We will wait for this.
“We grew up very modest, so we don’t like to talk about ourselves so much. But this is really rare. I hope people know that it is very rare for three brothers to be in the same position and succeed.”
That’s why comparisons to next-generation MLB royalties are unfair, he said.
“I know they are talented and I know they are likely to have a good career,” Benji said. “But when they’re over, then we’ll have this conversation.”
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