Díaz brothers ready to be teammates

March 3rd, 2023

This story was excerpted from Anthony DiComo's Mets Beat newsletter. To read the full newsletter, click here. And subscribe to get it regularly in your inbox.

Along with more than a dozen Mets players, one of the team’s clubhouse attendants will travel south to Miami next week to help out at the World Baseball Classic. has already approached him with a request: Please put his locker next to his brother’s. 

“It’s the first time we will play together,” Díaz said. 

Because Díaz is two and a half years older than his brother, Alexis, the two never played on the same team as children. They’ve always worked out together in the offseason, and since Alexis’ big league debut with the Reds, their routines have become more enmeshed. But for most of the year, they are separated. Their rare connections on the diamond occurred last July and August, when the Mets and Reds faced off at their respective ballparks. Even then, Alexis was on the injured list for the series in Cincinnati and could not participate. 

For those reasons and more, this Classic will be extra meaningful for the Díaz family.

“I’ve always wanted to compete with my brother on the same team,” Alexis said. “Fortunately, we’ll be able to do that this time around. We’ve been hoping and dreaming for this day forever. We’re just anxious for it to come around. It’s an honor to represent Puerto Rico. I am really excited to get going.” 

So are the Díaz parents, who plan to arrive in Miami the same day as their sons and stay for as long as Team Puerto Rico is active. It’s the second WBC appearance for Edwin, who saved two games and pitched in four during the 2017 event. 

In addition to Edwin and Alexis, the 2023 version of Team Puerto Rico features multiple other closer options in Jorge López and Emilio Pagán, giving manager Yadier Molina flexibility to avoid overtaxing any of those pitchers. The Mets and Team Puerto Rico have come to an agreement that Edwin won’t pitch on back-to-back days unless Puerto Rico reaches the finals. 

That could result in a situation in which Edwin saves one game and Alexis saves the next. Or …  

“I think cooler would be he pitches the eighth and I pitch the ninth,” Edwin said. “That would be really emotional for my parents.”