10-year Marliniversary: Fernández wraps up stellar rookie season with gem, first career homer

José Fernández wrapped up a stellar rookie year with a gem on the mound and his first career home run at the plate.

For the Miami Marlins, José Fernández’s rookie season was something to behold. With a 12-6 record and stellar 2.19 ERA, Fernández was named an All-Star and the 2013 National League Rookie of the Year.

On this day 10 years ago, Fernández ended his rookie campaign in grand fashion. Fernández shined on the mound and at the plate in a 5-2 win over the Atlanta Braves.

Due to an innings limit, Fernández knew it would be his final start of the season as he arrived at Marlins Park on Sept. 11, 2013. With a lively crowd set to see the Cuban native, Fernández did not disappoint.

On the mound, Fernández tossed seven solid innings, allowing just a run on five hits. Fernández was able to work around doubles in each of the first two innings and out of a bases-loaded jam in the fourth. He finished the night with three walks and five strikeouts.

Perhaps most memorable, however, was his final at-bat of the season. With the Marlins leading 4-1 in the bottom of the sixth, Fernández took Mike Minor’s 1-0 offering over the wall to left field for his first career home run to extend the lead to four.

Fernández took an extra second to admire his blast, which was met with an unpleasant welcome from Atlanta catcher Brian McCann as the Miami pitcher made his way toward home. As the two exchanged words, the benches cleared, but no one was ejected.

In what would be his final inning of the year, Fernández worked around a one-out walk to toss a scoreless seventh. Mike Dunn worked a 1-2-3 eighth before Atlanta added a run off Steve Cishek on an RBI double from Elliot Johnson in the ninth.

Giancarlo Stanton got the scoring started for the Marlins with an RBI single in the first. After Logan Morrison singled home a run in the fourth, Stanton pushed the lead to 4-0 with a two-run homer in the fifth. Evan Gattis’ solo homer on the first pitch of the sixth got the Braves on the board and served as the lone run off Fernández.

Following his rookie season, Fernández had the look of baseball’s next big pitching star. A two-time All-Star, Fernández was among three people to die tragically in a South Florida boating accident in September 2016. His rookie season culminated in memorable fashion on this day a decade ago.

Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Mike Ferguson is a contributor for Fish on First, who covers Miami Marlins history. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeWFerguson.

3 responses to “10-year Marliniversary: Fernández wraps up stellar rookie season with gem, first career homer”

  1. You need to change your policy of celebrating mass murders. Hitler was known for his exhuberant speeches, but no one honors him. Every time someone honors the killer, they bring new hurt to the Macias and Rivero families. How about a piece interviewing them and telling their story? The author of this piece, Mike Ferguson, has a picture of his two young beautiful girls on his X homepage. If they were killed by a drunk and drugged driver would you honor their killer for his exhuberance? In his profile, he says he is a Christian, but he does not act like it. And making matters worse, the article falsely states that the killer was a passive victim of an “accident”. The official government report stated that he committed two acts of vessel homicide. Under the law, when you drink and take drugs then get behind the wheel, that act is intentional, not an accident. Think about the victims rather than your own immature glorification of a deceased baseball player. No one else honors him ever since the truth came out.

  2. This is really disgusting to glorify a mass murderer in this way. Everyone needs to read the official Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission report which states that Fernandez intentionally got drunk and high on cocaine and committed two acts of vessel homicide. Had he lived, he would have spent his life in a Florida maximum security prison. Saying that he was just among the people to die in a boating accident is like saying Hitler was among the people to die during the gas chambers accidents. Jose Fernandez was a cocaine addict and mass murderer. We should glorify his victims – Emilio Jesus Macias and Eduardo Rivero – not Jose. The Marlins recognized this by removing his shrine, the City of Miami recognized this by cancelling plans to name a street after him and his family recognized this by finally paying the victims’ families. It’s time Fish on First recognizes it too.

    1. His mistakes off the field have forever stained his legacy, but his accomplishments and exuberance on the field will still be celebrated here.

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