By ALEX GOLDMAN
I’m not the first to write about him. And I won’t be the last.
It seemed like too obvious a choice to write about for this week, yet in the end I couldn’t help myself.
I had to write about Jose Fernandez. Just like many others this week.
The Miami Marlins pitcher was killed in a boating incident early Sunday morning in Miami Beach. The boat hit a rock jetty. Fernandez and two other men were killed. Instantly, I hope.
Coverage of his death on Sunday, tributes made out to him Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, and live coverage of his public and family funeral processions Wednesday and Thursday were hot topics.
The uniform blog Uni-Watch covered all sports-related tributes to Fernandez. Among them were the Marlins wearing “Fernandez” jersey’s with his No. 16 for the duration of their Monday game against the New York Mets. Uni-Watch believes this to be the first occasion of a team memorializing a player through uniformly (get it?) dressing the team in that player’s jersey (excluding the league-wide wearing of Jackie Robinson’s “42” for one day of each season).
Local TV stations WPLG 10, WTVJ 6, WSVN 7, and WFOR-TV 4 all aired the funeral procession live, with commentary.
The coverage is warranted. Fernandez was an incredibly bright light. He had an infectious smile. He was able to penetrate through to Barry Bonds’ soft side. The courage he displayed through 4 overall attempts to defect from Cuba is immeasurable.
And he was only 24.
We’ll all be left to wonder what more he could have given us.