Eric Roseberry, who writes for our fantasy team, hosts a podcast called On Baseball Writing. Counterintuitively, the topic is writing about baseball. I’m not writing this to plug the podcast (though it’s really good!), but to point out that in January, Eric interviewed Carson Cistulli of FanGraphs. He asked Carson one of his standard questions about how to get started in baseball writing, to which Carson replied: “Start your own dumb blog.”
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I'll tell you about the magic, and it'll free your soul.
The world can be oppressive. The grim reality of it can trap us and hem us in. It makes it hard to breathe, and limits us with grief. In The Year of Magical Thinking, her memoir on the passing of her husband, Joan Didion writes, “Grief is different. Grief has no distance. Grief comes in waves, paroxysms, sudden apprehensions that weaken the knees and blind the eyes and obliterate the dailiness of life.” We have our routines and then grief breaks them. It’s right there in the room with us. Grief cancels baseball games, and obliterates their routine when they are played. Grief by its presence reminds us that Jose Fernandez died on the rocks at age 24. Grief gets close, and interferes with reason. Grief, Didion tells us, leads to magical thinking.
Miami will never forget Jose Fernandez, but they could take steps to ensure his name is forever linked to the team.
Dee Gordonprovided the best tribute to Jose Fernandez we’re going to see in 2016, and for that matter, the best moment of 2016 in MLB, with his performance on Monday night. It wasn’t so much that he hit his first home run of a trying season on his first swing since Fernandez’s death, but the way he then ran the bases, fighting back tears for a moment, then letting them flow. It was the way he wiped his eyes and pointed to the sky, the way he then hugged so many of his coaches and teammates, none of them jubilant, none giddy, all just overcome and leaning on each other because the alternative (as it has been since Sunday morning, for so many inside and outside the Marlins organization) seemed to be to physically fall down under the weight of it all.
That moment was terrible and beautiful, everything we ask sports to be. Often, even when we ask that much of sports, they don’t provide it. Sports aren’t designed to comfort the grieving or to unite the divided or to inspire the desperate. Every so often, though, when the right people end up in the middle of sports’ peculiar dramas, those people can make sports really substantial. Gordon and his teammates (and in a less obvious way, the gracious Mets) did some of that heavy lifting Monday.
Becoming fans of Jose Fernandez linked a daughter and mother, in life and in death.
Jose Fernandez wasn’t just a great pitcher, he was a symbol that held so much meaning, not just to everyone in baseball, but to many people in the Miami community and around the world. We didn’t just lose a star athlete too soon, we lost an all-encompassing asset to all our lives. Fernandez helped us see parts of ourselves, he reflected parts of us--such as our love for the game--that for some, has gotten lost in the translation of adulthood, and he has opened our eyes to ways in which we can improve our quality of life through pride, joy, innocence, and selflessness.
My awareness of Fernandez as anything more than a Cuban rookie pitcher who was taking the National League by storm was minimal in 2013. The intriguing young star piqued my interest for the very first time after this incident, Fernandez’s first big -eague home run, and what followed.
No one will forget Jose Fernandez, on or off the field.
There is a traditional Mexican folk song whose roots and history are woven deep into the Mexican culture and consciousness. It is a macabre song describing the wishes one person is leaving to another regarding how they want to be remembered in death. La Martiniana’s famous line is the following:
“No me llores, no, no me llores, no,
Porque si lloras yo peno,
En cambio si tú me cantas
Yo siempre vivo, yo nunca muero.”
Which roughly translates to:
“Don't cry for me, no, don't cry for me, no
Because if you cry, I will suffer
Instead, if you sing songs of my life
I will live forever and never die.”
Do we need to revisit how we view seasons like the one Miami's ace is putting up?
On Friday morning, it looked likely that the most interesting game of the entire weekend would take place Friday night in Miami. On Saturday night, Rich Hill and Dave Roberts made sure the previous night’s game wouldn’t even be the most memorable of the series. Plenty has been written about the Dodgers’ manager, their second-best left-handed starter, and the heat emanating from that southpaw’s index finger. I want to take a little more time to talk about Friday night. And actually, let’s forget about the Dodgers.
Does PITCHf/x suggest that the Marlins' injured ace should have been pulled from his final starts sooner?
In a statement released last Friday, the attorney for injured ace Jose Fernandez—who underwent Tommy John surgery to repair his torn ulnar collateral ligament the same day—accused the Marlins coaching staff of not picking up on an “unanticipated change” in his delivery caused by discomfort in his second-to-last start preceding the surgery.