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Jose Fernandez strikes out eight Mets in major league debut

Apr 7, 2013, 3:48 PM EDT

Jose Fernandez Reuters

A week after the Marlins shocked everyone by announcing his callup, 20-year-old Jose Fernandez allowed one run in five innings and struck out eight Mets in his major league debut Sunday.

Fernandez, regarded as one of the game’s top five pitching prospects, was expected to spend the bulk of the season in the minors. In fact, he made just one two-inning appearance for the Marlins this spring before being sent down. The team, though, had a change of heart when both Henderson Alvarez and Nathan Eovaldi came down with sore shoulder at the end of the spring.

Fernandez allowed three hits and walked one before leaving with a 3-1 lead today. He threw 80 pitches, 53 of them for strikes, and topped out at 97 mph on the gun. He became the 22nd pitcher since 2000 to strike out at least eight batters in his major league debut. Matt Harvey (11) and Collin McHugh (nine) of the Mets were the only two to do it last year.

The Marlins are planning on limiting Fernandez to 150-170 innings this season, so five- and six-inning starts will be the norm for him.

  1. Kevin S. - Apr 7, 2013 at 3:51 PM

    Since when is an International League team considered part of the major leagues?

  2. dondada10 - Apr 7, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    Fangraphs had an article suggesting that J. Fernandez is on the roster to attract the Cuban community to the stadium.

    He didn’t look like a marketing ploy to me.

    • Old Gator - Apr 7, 2013 at 10:15 PM

      Well, let’s say that he’s a marketing ploy with moxie. There’s no denying his talent, but I also don’t doubt that the Feesh will market him to the local Cuban community for all he’s worth. Why shouldn’t they, as long as he’s the real thing when he takes the field? He does appeal to a large segment of their market demographic. I’d have problems with it if he weren’t ready, if I thought they were going to make the next Andrew Miller out of him by wrecking his confidence before polishing his skills. But base on what I saw today, and what I’ve learned about his background, this is one tough kid. He might manage a leap of this magnitude after all. We shall see.

  3. thebadguyswon - Apr 7, 2013 at 4:15 PM

    You’ll be laughing real hard Kevin in two years when the Mets have the best rotation in baseball.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Apr 7, 2013 at 5:09 PM

      They have a long way to go to dethrone the Tigers, let alone the Giants or the Nationals.

      • bbk1000 - Apr 7, 2013 at 5:59 PM

        ahh, no they don’t…..

      • tuberippin - Apr 7, 2013 at 11:58 PM

        The potential inherent in a homegrown Mets rotation consisting of Zack Wheeler, Matt Harvey, Jon Niese, Noah Syndergaard and Rafael Montero or Dillon Gee is tantalizing to say the least (and I say this as a Phillies fan, so it’s not like I’m rooting for the Mets to succeed; on another note it is going to sting like hell seeing Travis d’Arnaud in a Mets uniform soon). That’s without getting into the potential of future bullpen arms like Jeurys Familia, Luis Mateo, Jenrry Mejia, Domingo Tapia, and Mike Fulmer.

        The impediment, as has historically been the case with the Mets, will be their hitting. They have a variety of toolsy prospects in their pipeline (Wilmer Flores, Brandon Nimmo, Cesar Puello, et al) but aside from Reyes and Wright, there have been no Mets hitting prospects to have matched their potential in the past ten to fifteen years (and I am including Ike Davis in that discussion until he stops playing like a clone of Mike Jacobs). For every David Wright and Jose Reyes there’s been a Lastings Milledge and Fernando Martinez.

        The question is not their potential; all the aforementioned prospects have a lot of potential. The question is whether that potential can be met while wearing a Mets uniform.

    • Kevin S. - Apr 7, 2013 at 8:27 PM

      What does the potential caliber of their rotation have anything to do with the dismal nature of their lineup today?

  4. alexo0 - Apr 7, 2013 at 4:32 PM

    Jeffrey Loria’s plan is working perfectly so far.

    • Old Gator - Apr 7, 2013 at 10:16 PM

      Yes, his portfolio is up by a half a point this week.

  5. thebadguyswon - Apr 7, 2013 at 5:15 PM

    Harvey-Wheeler-Niese-Montero-Gee will be just as good as all of those rotations. Going to happen quicker than the haters want to believe too.

    • dondada10 - Apr 7, 2013 at 6:08 PM

      Don’t forget Syndergaard, Fulmer, McHugh, and Tapia.

      • Old Gator - Apr 7, 2013 at 10:17 PM

        I caught some tilapia in the canal the other day. They fry up beautifully. They’re an invasive species, yes, but they taste a lot better than the bluegills, crappies and sunfish they’re driving out.

  6. sdelmonte - Apr 7, 2013 at 5:38 PM

    But in the end, the final score is what matters most and even though the Mets were adding to the winds swirling around the city today, and even though the Marlins were getting a steady diet of hittable pitches, the Mets won.

    Whether this means anything is beyond me.

    • Old Gator - Apr 7, 2013 at 6:26 PM

      Fernandez was terrific. He’s also a very bright and articulate kid who didn’t start learning English until he was about 15 years old and is mostly self-taught.

      Here’s some idea of why, aside from his pitching talent, he is going to be great if he doesn’t suffer any major physical problems: he and his mother escaped from Cuba to Mexico when he was about 15 in an overcrowded speedboat, and during the night in rough seas he noticed one of the passengers fall overboard. He called to stop the boat and dove into the sea, swam thirty yards groping in the dark to find her, and then swam back to the boat through the swells with the woman clinging to him with her arms around his neck – and only then discovered that he had just saved his own mother. He was also arrested twice and even did jail time for trying to leave the island – all before the age of 15.

      This kid is going to be just fine, I think.

      It’s too bad that the Feesh boolpen imploded behind him, as usual, but he will rack up his share of Ws.

      • dondada10 - Apr 7, 2013 at 11:15 PM

        That could easily be a feature length film.

    • richyballgame - Apr 8, 2013 at 1:11 AM

      I was at the game,Fernandez was frustrating me… I had a love/hate relationship with his performance. Loved seeing an electric young pitcher make what looks like the first start of many in a promising career. I hated that he held the Mets down…

  7. fearthehoody - Apr 7, 2013 at 7:06 PM

    So the Fish have another young super star? So I guess that means he will be traded by 2016??

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