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Newly minted All-Star Yelich returns to Miami

MLB.com @AdamMcCalvy

MIAMI -- Christian Yelich made his return to Marlins Park on Monday at the perfect time -- as a newly minted All-Star.

Traded from the Marlins to the Brewers in a Jan. 25 blockbuster, Yelich was among a trio of Brewers named to the Midsummer Classic on Sunday just before the club left for Miami. He went 2-for-5 and scored a run in the Brewers' 4-3, 10-inning loss to open a three-game series.

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MIAMI -- Christian Yelich made his return to Marlins Park on Monday at the perfect time -- as a newly minted All-Star.

Traded from the Marlins to the Brewers in a Jan. 25 blockbuster, Yelich was among a trio of Brewers named to the Midsummer Classic on Sunday just before the club left for Miami. He went 2-for-5 and scored a run in the Brewers' 4-3, 10-inning loss to open a three-game series.

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"It's special. It's a good feeling," Yelich said. "It's cool to come back with a first-place team and a winning team. It's great to see some familiar faces around the ballpark. … It's where it started for me, really. You get all of those memories of your first game playing here as a rookie. Obviously, there were some ups and downs, but it's exciting to come back here."

Video: MIL@MIA: Yelich singles in return to Marlins Park

Yelich had already played here as a visitor during the last World Baseball Classic, so Monday wasn't his first time in the visitors' clubhouse. Still, this was different.

"He should be really proud coming back here, and he should come in with his head held high," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said.

Video: Yelich, Hader, Cain to play in the 2018 All-Star Game

Missing from Yelich's homecoming was his best friend on the Marlins, catcher J.T. Realmuto. They were both drafted in 2010 (Yelich in the first round, Realmuto the third), signed within days of each other and began their professional careers as roommates in the Gulf Coast League. They remained teammates and roommates at each level of the Minors, then shared an apartment in Miami as Major Leaguers.

"We didn't live together last year because he was getting married, and that would have been a little weird," Yelich said.

Yelich was out in Miami with Realmuto the night Realmuto met his now-wife, Alexis. On Sunday, when Yelich and Realmuto were both named first-time All-Stars and exchanged texts, Yelich learned Realmuto would be placed on the paternity list Monday because Alexis was due to deliver the couple's first child.

"We were talking yesterday about how special it will be to share our first All-Star Game together," Yelich said. "It's only fitting because we had so many memorable moments together coming up through the Minor Leagues, going through the ups and downs. We were living together for a few years, going through tragedies together here. So it's special to be here for him having a kid."

Video: MIL@MIA: Brewers booth on Yelich's return to Miami

Realmuto, incidentally, is a potential player of interest to the Brewers ahead of the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline, though all indications are the Marlins are unmotivated to move him after dealing Yelich, Giancarlo Stanton, Marcell Ozuna and Dee Gordon last offseason. Realmuto is under club control through 2021 and would bolster a position at which the Brewers entered Monday ranked 13th of 15 NL teams with a .633 OPS.

"I think [Realmuto] is the best catcher in baseball," Yelich said. "Of course, I'm biased."

Miley to rejoin rotation
Left-hander Wade Miley is scheduled to come off the 60-day disabled list to start against the Pirates at PNC Park after navigating four Minor League starts without a setback in his strained right oblique. Miley met the team Monday at Marlins Park after a stint with Double-A Biloxi.

His most recent start was his sharpest, Miley said. He threw 57 pitches in four perfect innings with four strikeouts.

"The first couple starts, I was second-guessing myself. I was pulling off on everything," Miley said. "I don't know why. I felt fine. I couldn't make pitches. I just stayed at it and told myself, 'I'm fine.' I guess that's your brain trying to protect your body in a sense."

The Brewers have an opening in the rotation after optioning right-hander Aaron Wilkerson back to Triple-A following his Saturday start against the Braves. They'll need another starter for one of the games of this Saturday's doubleheader in Pittsburgh.

It's unlikely to be Brent Suter, who is on the DL with a left forearm tightness. Suter has been playing catch, but his return to the rotation is more likely to come after the All-Star break, Counsell said.

Brewers stump for Aguilar
While National League Final Vote candidate Jesus Aguilar made the media rounds from Miami, Brewers officials back in Milwaukee have been pressing his All-Star Game candidacy with the public. On Tuesday from 8-10 a.m. CT at Holey Moley Coffee + Doughnuts in the Mayfair Collection, 11340 W Burleigh St., Wauwatosa, Wis., the first 500 fans will receive a "Sweet Jesús" doughnut while casting their votes.

Tweet from @Brewers: Jes��s appears to be getting a big head from all this praise.Vote: https://t.co/ZGJNZU1cbn#WeBelieveInJes��s pic.twitter.com/U6VARbQ5t7

At Marlins Park, teammates wore T-shirts bearing the phrase "I believe in Jesús" for batting practice after spending the day making his case via their social media accounts. Aguilar entered the day tied with Rockies All-Star Nolan Arenado for the NL lead with 22 home runs, and tied for third with 63 RBIs. Only Reds All-Star Eugenio Suarez had a better wRC+ or wOBA than Aguilar, who hit his way into regular duty for the Brewers in late April and early May.

Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy and like him on Facebook.

Milwaukee Brewers, Christian Yelich