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Every Miami Marlins player will wear No. 16 in honor of Jose Fernandez on Monday night. And then no one else will, ever again.
Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria told reporters Monday before the Marlins’ game with the New York Mets that the club would be retiring Fernandez’s number:
I asked #Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria if he's put thought into retiring No. 16. "Nobody else is wearing that number. I can tell you that."
— James Walker (@JamesWalkerNFL) September 26, 2016
If the Marlins go through with an official number retirement, Fernandez would be the first player from the franchise to have his number retired. Like every MLB team, they’ve retired No. 42 for Jackie Robinson.
Fernandez, 24, was killed early Sunday morning in a boating accident in Miami. It’s no exaggeration to say he was one of the best pitchers in baseball and figured to be for the next decade.
He won the NL Rookie of the Year in 2013 and this season will be at least a Cy Young runner-up. He was 16-8 with a 2.58 ERA and 253 strikeouts, which is the second highest total in MLB.
We’ll never know if Fernandez would have had the type of career that would lead to a number retirement in 25 years or a Hall of Fame plaque. But he was certainly on that path.
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