The baseball world was set ablaze this week when reports surfaced that there was a possibility the Miami Marlins could move ace Jose Fernandez in the summer. The rumors had their genesis in stalled contractual negotiations between the perpetually-maligned Scott Boras and the Marlins who infamously “banned” the super GM from talks about Fernandez’ workload earlier in the week. A few days later Fernandez stated “I do not know what all this is all about, but Scott Boras will be there, because he’s my agent. I get to decide who is going to be on my phone calls. It’s that simple.”
The rumblings influenced ESPN baseball contributor David Schoenfield to note that the Dodgers, Royals, Red Sox, Twins and Astros could be potential landing spots for the former Rookie of the Year.
Despite the fans’ unequivocal love for the Cuban export players inside the locker room might not always appreciate his semantics “On at least two occasions in the Marlins clubhouse this season, Fernandez approached (president of baseball operations Mike) Hill — according to multiple player sources — and openly said ‘when are you going to trade me?’” said Schoenfield. “There were times this season where, not all, but some players and coaches hoped Jose would go out on the mound and get shelled. [an anonymous player stated] We thought it would get him to be more humble.”
Since coming into the league in 2013, the one time all-star has been the heart and soul of South Floridian baseball, putting a charge in a undoubtedly dormant fan base that adores the Santa Clara, Cuba native. He is, in most ways imaginable, the city of Miami symbolised in a person, effervescent, entertaining and always up for an event. To trade Jose Fernandez would be a larger hit to the city’s baseball future than any shot management has applied before. The 2012 clear-out ripped the team in half and left franchise centrepiece Giancarlo Stanton unhappy, the Miguel Cabrera/Dontrelle Willis trade ripped out the future and “mojo” of the city but nothing would equate to trading Fernandez.
It would be like killing the ringleader of a gang, he is everything to that city and team, more so than Giancarlo Stanton. Stanton somehow gets people off their phone for three minutes during the game but attendance when Fernandez is on the bump isn’t comparable to when, let’s say, Jarred Cosart is pitching. Having been in attendance when the former Cy Young finalist was on the mound, I can attest to the collective buzz in the ballpark when he makes it to the mound, a buzz astray from the ballpark on any other day than “Jose day”.
Joe Frisaro of MLB.com spoke to some people “in the know” and admits that the Marlins ace will not be dealt, but knowing the people in charge in Miami, intelligent thought isn’t all that depended upon.