SAN DIEGO – Three days after becoming the first Colombian starting pitchers to face each other in a major league game, the Braves’ Julio Teheran and Jose Quintana of the White Sox had a chance at another distinction Tuesday: first Colombians to pitch in an All-Star game.
The only Colombian to play in a previous All-Star game was Edgar Renteria, who made five National League All-Star teams with three teams including the Braves in 2006. Teheran was on the 2014 All-Star team but didn’t play in the game after pitching on the final Sunday before the break.
“I’m representing the Braves and representing my country,” Teheran said. “I know they’re going to watch us (in Colombia). We’ve got a lot of people making phone calls to us. We’re making history.”
With both Teheran and Quintana having two days of rest since they pitched Saturday, each was ready to pitch Tuesday night if called upon. Quintana was added to the American League All-Star team Sunday to replace Danny Salazar after the Cleveland ace pitched Sunday and would thus not have been eligible to pitch Tuesday.
Other than being asked about trade rumors, the All-Star break has been a respite for Teheran, whose parents, wife and brother accompanied him to San Diego. After enjoying a few days of perfect weather and the company of family and fellow All-Stars, it'll be back to the regular-season grind and trying to help the Braves continue recent improvement.
The Braves were 9-28 when Fredi Gonzalez was fired as manager. They are 22-30 under interim manager Brian Snitker, including 13-12 in their last 25 games before the All-Star break.
“It’s been a hard year,” Teheran said. “The team has been up and down, switched the manager. But you just try to concentrate on what you can control. Things have been working better.”
And for one night Tuesday, he and Quintana were opponents but at least figuratively on the same team – Colombia. Yes, this game was a big deal in Colombia.
“Yeah, it’s a big deal everywhere, the whole world,” Teheran said, smiling. “Everybody’s watching us right now, the best of the best. It’s good to feel like that.”
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Credit: Channel 2 Action News