Like everything else about last night’s All-Star game Jose Fernandez was overshadowed by Mariano Rivera, but the Marlins rookie had a pretty eventful evening too.
Fernandez was the youngest All-Star pitcher at age 20 and threw a 1-2-3 sixth inning, setting down former MVP Dustin Pedroia, former MVP Miguel Cabrera, and current MLB home run leader Chris Davis in order.
Fernandez struck out Pedroia and Davis, and in doing so became just the third under-21 pitcher in All-Star game history with multiple strikeouts. Via Manny Navarro of the Miami Herald, the other two are Bob Feller and Dwight Gooden. That’s some nice company for one of the least talked about young stars in baseball.
There were a few exhibitions against college teams yesterday but today the Grapefruit League and Cactus League schedules begin in earnest, with big league teams, more or less, facing big league team, more or less.
The baseball will look like baseball, but the teams will be wearing different caps today: black caps with the maroon “SD” of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where 17 people were killed in a mass shooting on February 14.
All teams and umpire crews will wear the caps pre-game, and they have the option to wear the caps during the games. The only two teams not playing today — the Royals and Rangers — will wear them tomorrow.
After the games players will sign the caps and they will be auctioned off to raise money for the Broward Education Foundation, which benefits the official Stoneman Douglas Victims’ Fund.
Here’s today’s schedule: