MIAMI (WSVN) - The Miami Marlins announced that its players will never again wear the number 16, in honor of Jose Fernandez, who died over the weekend.
The team’s owner, Jeffrey Loria, told 7News that the jersey has not yet been officially retired but said that “no Marlins player will wear the number 16 again.”
It is unclear at this time if the jersey will be officially retired, in the near future.
All Miami Marlins players will, however, wear #16 jerseys at Monday night’s game in honor of Fernandez. A Miami Herald beat reporter broke that detail via Twitter.
The locker room was closed to the media. Inside the clubhouse, officials spoke about what they would be doing to memorialize Fernandez before the game against the New York Mets, Monday, at 7 p.m.
A moment of silence is scheduled to take place before the game. On the pitcher’s mound, the number “16” has been written out for Fernandez’s jersey number. Second baseman Dee Gordon placed Fernandez’s hat, glove and a baseball on the pitching rubber, Monday.
Many players wrote “JDF #16” on their own baseball caps. “I don’t think we’re moving on at all,” said Marlins president David Samson. “I think that we’re playing a game tonight with the heaviest of hearts.”
Each player will wear #16 jerseys during the game after receiving permission from Major League Baseball. Those jerseys were specially made in Philadelphia and flown in. The shipment for those jerseys arrived around 6:30 p.m., Monday.
Fernandez was scheduled to pitch against the Mets Monday night. “We have a love for Jose, the way he played and his passion for the game, and his energy for it,” said Marlins manager Don Mattingly. “I think our guys want to honor that, what we’ve learned from him and the joy he played with.”
According to sources, during the national anthem, instead of the players lining up on the baseline, it has been reported that they will take their position on the field and leave the mound left open for Fernandez.
“He was a very humble guy, very humble and very caring,” Loria said. “In spite of all the bravado, which we all know the bravado, the bravado was for the way he competed.”
Fernandez and two other men died when their 32-foot vessel slammed into a jetty off Miami Beach, authorities said. The capsized boat was found shortly after 3 a.m., and the news sent shock waves throughout Major League Baseball.
The other two victims were Emilio Macias, 27, and Eduardo Rivero, 25, according to Darren Caprara, operations director of the Miami-Dade Medical Examiner’s Office.
The Marlins’ game Sunday against Atlanta was canceled, but there were pre-game tributes and moments of silence for him throughout both leagues. Boston Red Sox star David Ortiz asked the Tampa Bay Rays to cancel a pregame tribute they scheduled in his honor before his final game in their ballpark Sunday.
Somber does not nearly describe the feeling that has lingered after Fernandez’s death, especially for his manager, Scott Boras. “There’s a lot of arguments that statistically he’s one of the best all-time,” he said before choking up.
During the seventh inning stretch, “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” is usually played, but instead as tribute, a trumpeter will play the song and fans will take a moment of silence.
The Marlins are scheduled to play The Mets at Marlins Park at 7:10 p.m.
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