As the days pass after the death of Jose Fernandez, all of baseball has come together to celebrate his short, but extraordinary career.
Drafted by the Miami Marlins in 2011, he debuted April 7, 2013. He went 12-6 that year, with a 2.19 ERA, earning him the title, Rookie of the Year. In his career, at only 24 years old, he was 38-17, with a 2.58 ERA and was a two time All-Star. He had pitched only 471.1 innings in his major league career. He had an incredible gift for the game of baseball.
His teammates, as well as the rest of the baseball world, remember him for his love of the game and for his wonderful personality. They all wore his name and number on their jerseys to commemorate him on Monday night against the Mets. They drew his number on the mound, and took a minute of silence to remember and honor him.
They are not alone, every Major League Baseball team has honored his memory and tried to keep his spirit alive. Many players have posted pictures and tweets, showing everyone just amazing this young player was. Fernandez was much loved by his fellow players, as well as his fans.
Fans have been posting stories and videos all over social media of their interactions with Fernandez. All of them describe him to be cheerful, happy and humble as can be.
Fernandez grew up in Santa Clara, Cuba, just down the street from St. Louis Cardinals’ rookie, Aledmys Diaz. Allegedly, it was Diaz’s dad who introduced Fernandez to the sport. Diaz missed the Cardinals game on Monday to go show his support for Fernandez’s family. He hung up a jersey with Fernandez’s name on it in the dugout tonight to honor him. Diaz dedicated tonight’s performance to his friend, and that is when the magic happened. Tonight, Diaz hit his first career grand slam to give the Cardinals the lead in the bottom of the fourth inning, leading to a 12-5 Cardinals win. There is no better way to honor a childhood friend than by hitting a grand slam for them.
Cardinals pitcher, Carlos Martinez, drew the number 16 into the mound before he started the game. On his hat, he wrote OT 18 and JF 16, giving tribute to friend and teammate, Oscar Taveras, as well as Jose Fernandez.
The Cardinals took to Twitter to express their condolences over the loss of a fellow baseball player, tweeting “We will always remember. #RIPJose.” They also stood for a moment of silence in his memory before Sunday and Monday’s games. They also retweeted messages of condolences from Marco Gonzales, Matt Carpenter, Jedd Gyorko, Adam Wainwright, Kolten Wong, Carson Kelly, Luke Weaver and Carolos Martinez.
From just the short amount of time he has been gone, it has been made quite clear. Though he is no longer here, his memory and his passion will live on forever. No one will soon forget the name, Jose Fernandez.