NEW YORK -- The word "catire" is an adjective in Spanish meaning a blonde, fair-haired, fair-skinned person. The word will be stitched across the back of Wilmer Flores' jersey for Players' Weekend, when each player gets to choose a nickname for their jersey. It may seem strange that Flores, a player
NEW YORK -- The word "catire" is an adjective in Spanish meaning a blonde, fair-haired, fair-skinned person. The word will be stitched across the back of Wilmer Flores' jersey for Players' Weekend, when each player gets to choose a nickname for their jersey. It may seem strange that Flores, a player with such dark hair, would go by that moniker, but as a child his hair was much lighter. It was also the only way to tell him apart from the three other Wilmer Floreses in the house.
"I was blonde when I was born," Flores said. "So since the first day, they've just called me that in my family, and that's how it stayed."
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The Venezuelan native comes from a family of eight, including three brothers and two sisters. Of the five men in the family, four of them share the name Wilmer Flores. His father, the original Wilmer Flores, is the only one who gets to go by the name "Wilmer" at home. There are four Flores sons, three of which are named Wilmer, and the eldest is named Ronny. His two sisters are named Carla and Ana Lucia.
"That's basically it," Flores said. "Nobody calls nobody Wilmer."
Many times, families that have multiple members with the same name may distinguish one another by using middle names. Although they all have different middle names, each Wilmer goes by a nickname that differentiates him from the others.
• Mets' nicknames for Players' Weekend
Wilmer Alejandro Flores -- the one we know for watching Friends and being the walk-off king of New York -- goes by "catire", or "blondie." The youngest brother -- Wilmer de Jesus Flores -- is called "chiquito" in the Flores household, meaning "little." Wilmer Rafael Flores is called "patacon," which is a popular Venezuelan dish made from fried plantains.
When asked what that one meant, Flores laughed.
"It's hard," Flores said. "It's hard to explain."
• All you need to know about Players' Weekend
Players' Weekend will take place from Friday, Aug. 24, through Sunday, Aug. 26. This is the second year in a row that Flores has sported the nickname "catire" on the back of his Mets uniform for Players' Weekend. He is looking forward to once again repping the name his family has always called him.
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"It's always exciting. Our family gets excited," Flores said. "When they see what they used to call me and what they still call me, on your back, it's really fun for them too."
Erin Fish is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York.