Marlins fans bringing flowers to stadium
Some reaction around baseball --- from ESPN analysts and Twitter accounts of players and others --- on the Sunday morning death of Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez from a boating accident:
“Jose Fernandez is one of the most genuine guys I've ever played with. He loved life, he loved baseball.....he will be missed dearly.”
Former Marlins pitcher Dan Haren
“I’ve never met anyone who extracted more joy, more passion out of what he did than Jose Fernandez. I remember talking to him when he first came to the United States going to high school in Tampa area about trying to learn English and what a challenge that was.
“This year, when we had that [July 3] game at Fort Bragg, when the Braves played the Marlins, as the National Anthem was being played, Jose had camera. He came up to me and said Papi, look at this video. I said, Could you send it to me?’ He said ‘I don’t know how to do e-mail. Here Papi, you do it.’ He gave me his camera.
“He had such a great personality and loved everything he experienced in the United States. Within baseball circles, he was viewed as one of pre-eminent pitchers early in his career.
“Once he returned from Tommy John surgery, he was rediscovering his greatness. He seemed to be one of his players who would lift his teammates with his emotion and joy when he was on the mound…. It’s something [the Marlins] will never get over.”
ESPN’s Buster Olney
“The hardest part was telling my dad [Marlins advisor and Hall of Famer Tony Perez]. It’s like losing a grandson. When I told him, he started yelling. He had no fear. When Jose’s mother fell off the boat, he didn’t know who it was. He jumped. That’s who Jose was.
“I don’t have to explain to the Latinos. He meant so much to the organization, to the city, to the Cuban community. He comes in full of life. When he did things, he didn’t do it halfway. He knew the dangers of bicycling so he stopped.
“The kid, the enthusiasm, the love for the game, he never tried to show anybody up. He risked his life, he did it multiple times. To see how good he was on the field and how great he could have been. The impact he would have had even after the game…. He was a player who found a way to get people in the stands in Miami. He’s going to be greatly missed.”
How will he be remembered? “Pura vida. Pure Life. Que desanse en paz.”
Marlins TV and ESPN analyst Eduardo Perez, on ESPN this morning
“He lit up a ballpark when he was pitching but he also lit up a ballpark when he wasn’t pitching. I knew Jose somewhat. I just spoke to him last week about doing a feature where we were going to drive around Miami [this offseason]. Having grown up in Miami and still having a lot of roots in Miami, this is devastating. They called it Jose day when he pitched.”
ESPN’s Pedro Gomez
“Absolutely crushed hearing the news about Jose. Brought so much energy and passion towards life! You will be missed Papo RIP.”
Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer
“wow very sad new this morning...hands down one of my favorite guys to watch pitch! He brought nothing but intensity and passion #ripjose.”
Boston Red Sox pitcher David Price