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Gomes learns of All-Star nod in emotional at-bat

Backstop becomes sixth Indians player headed for Midsummer Classic
MLB.com

CLEVELAND -- A sixth Indians player will be heading to Washington, D.C., next week as a reserve for the All-Star Game presented by Mastercard.

Catcher Yan Gomes was announced to the Midsummer Classic during the ninth inning of the Tribe's 5-4 loss to the Yankees on Saturday at Progressive Field. Though Gomes finished 0-for-4 in the contest, he's been a solid piece in Cleveland's lineup.

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CLEVELAND -- A sixth Indians player will be heading to Washington, D.C., next week as a reserve for the All-Star Game presented by Mastercard.

Catcher Yan Gomes was announced to the Midsummer Classic during the ninth inning of the Tribe's 5-4 loss to the Yankees on Saturday at Progressive Field. Though Gomes finished 0-for-4 in the contest, he's been a solid piece in Cleveland's lineup.

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"We kind of erupted as if we just tied the game when we saw," said Saturday starter Mike Clevinger. "That speaks volumes for what he's done for not just me, but every pitcher in here, just being a good teammate all around and what he brings to the table."

Manager Terry Francona caught news of it prior to the official announcement during Gomes' ninth-inning at-bat. Francona told the first-time All-Star it would be a plate appearance to remember.

"I thought it was something completely different," Gomes said, smiling. "I thought he had a vision or something."

Gomes struck out on three pitches from fellow All-Star Aroldis Chapman, and the walk back to the dugout gave Gomes -- the first Brazilian-born player to receive an All-Star nod -- a unique mix of emotions. Gomes is Cleveland's first All-Star catcher since Victor Martinez in 2009, and it's the Tribe's first six-player All-Star roster since 1999.

"That was kind of a weird at-bat," Gomes said. "It was like the happiest strikeout. I had the weirdest feeling walking back.

"I don't think I've ever been that emotional in an at-bat before. I'm not going to lie, it was kind of hard to get back in the box. I tried to focus in there, but it didn't quite work out."

Gomes will serve as the replacement for Rays backstop Wilson Ramos, who was voted as the starting catcher by fans. Ramos exited Tampa Bay's 19-6 victory in the sixth inning with left hamstring tightness. He is expected to go on the 10-day disabled list. Royals catcher Salvador Perez will get the start instead.

"It would have been nice if he capped it off with a home run, but he's very deserving and even in a tight game like that where you're biting your nails to watch his teammates, that felt good," Francona said.

While watching the 2018 All-Star Game presented by Mastercard live on FOX on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. ET, fans can submit their choices for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet with the 2018 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote.

The 89th Midsummer Classic, at Nationals Park in Washington, will be televised nationally by FOX Sports; in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS; and worldwide by partners in more than 180 countries. FOX Deportes will provide Spanish-language coverage in the United States, while ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network, MLB.com and SiriusXM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage.

For more information about MLB All-Star Week and to purchase tickets, visit AllStarGame.com and follow @MLB and @AllStarGame on social media.

Casey Harrison is a reporter for MLB.com based in Cleveland.

Cleveland Indians, Yan Gomes