The Marlins have had three players — Dontrelle Willis, Hanley Ramirez and Chris Coghlan — capture National League Rookie of the Year honors.
In Jose Fernandez, they believe they have a fourth in the making.
“I’m biased,” manager Mike Redmond said. “But I think he definitely deserves that honor. I’ve watched this kid over the course of the year, and I can’t imagine there being a better rookie than him. He’s been amazing.”
One day after Fernandez struck out 14 Indians, Redmond and the 21-year-old pitcher’s teammates were still singing his praises.
Some follow-up tidbits from Friday’s performance:
• Fernandez’s 27 combined strikeouts over his past two outings are the most ever in consecutive games by any Marlins pitcher. Ricky Nolasco owned the previous mark with 23.
• According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Fernandez is just the fifth pitcher under the age of 22 since 1900 to record consecutive games of 13 strikeouts or more. He joined Dennis Eckersley (1976), Dwight Gooden (1984), Jose Rijo (1986) and Kerry Wood (1998).
Fernandez is also the first pitcher with consecutive games of 13 or more whiffs and one or fewer walks since Curt Schilling in 2002.
At the moment, Fernandez’s chief competition for Rookie of the Year honors appears to be the Dodgers’ Yusiel Puig and the Cardinals’ Shelby Miller.
The Marlins will honor members of their 2003 World Series team during a pregame ceremony Sunday. More than half the players from that team, including Ivan Rodriguez, Carl Pavano, Mike Lowell and Luis Castillo, are expected to be on hand for the ceremony.
Manager Jack McKeon is also attending.
McKeon, who underwent heart bypass surgery in early June, was hobnobbing with some of his former ’03 players during batting practice Saturday.
McKeon joked that now that he has a “new engine” with a “20-year warranty,” he might try to return to the field and break Connie Mack’s record as oldest manager. Mack managed his last game when he was 87. McKeon is 82.
“With this new heart, why not?” McKeon said. “You never know.”
Lost in the hilarity of Chad Qualls’ fist-pump-and-tumble on Wednesday was this previously unknown fact: rookie reliever Steve Ames’ pants zipper was open when he made his major-league debut in the same game. Ames retired the only batter he faced with his fly undone.
“I think I went to the bathroom, and I must have forgot to put it up,” Ames said.
Ames said infielders Ed Lucas and Logan Morrison noticed his open zipper but didn’t say anything because they were afraid it would unnerve him.
• Sunday: Marlins RHP Nathan Eovaldi (2-1, 3.47 ERA) vs. Cleveland Indians LHP Scott Kazmir (6-4, 4.11), 1:10 p.m., Marlins Park.
• Monday: No game.
• Scouting report: The Marlins close out a 10-game homestand with Eovaldi scheduled to take the mound. In three career interleague starts, Eovaldi is 0-1 with a 2.00 ERA. The Marlins have not scored any runs while Eovaldi has been on the mound over his past three starts.