Willson Contreras breaks down in tears after exchanging lineup card with brother

·2 min read

Chicago Cubs catcher Willson Contreras had an emotional night Thursday. The Cubs traveled to Georgia to take on the Atlanta Braves. Contreras' brother, William, is a catcher with Atlanta. The game marked the first time the two brothers would play against each other in the majors.

The two teams selected the Contreras brothers to exchange lineup cards at home plate before the game. The two players met, shook hands and shared an extended hug. When they released from the hug, Willson was wiping away tears.

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Willson was asked about that moment after the game. He got emotional a second time while giving his explanation.

Willson's full comments read:

"I remember watching him play Little League. And we we were always close. We're brothers. We never fought. And we support each other. Those are memories that I will never forget. I always recall those moments when we were growing up together back home just dreaming to get signed by somebody. And then dreaming to get to the big leagues. I'm crying because I'm proud of the job that we put together to get to where we are."

Willson and William Contreras reached majors a few years apart

The two Contreras brothers grew up in Venezuela hoping to get signed by an MLB team. Willson, the older sibling, got his shot first, signing with the Cubs as an undrafted free agent in 2009. He worked his way up through the team's system, eventually making his debut in 2016. The team won the World Series that season. Since then, Willson has anchored the Cubs' lineup. He's a two-time All-Star.

William signed with the Braves as an undrafted free agent in 2015. After a few strong seasons in the minors, Contreras made his major-league debut in 2020. He was a member of the team's World Series run in 2021, but only appeared in one postseason game. William made the Braves out of spring training in 2022, and is expected to serve as the team's backup catcher.

William did not play in Thursday's game, but his team came out on top. The Braves defeated the Cubs 5-1. Willson went 0-for-3 in the contest.

Willson Contreras and William Contreras.
Willson Contreras and William Contreras played each other for the first time since making the majors. (Photo by David J. Griffin/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)