Miami Marlins' Jose Fernandez Dazzles Colorado Rockies on Opening Day

By Gregory Philson
Jose Fernandez
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Miami Marlins starting pitcher Jose Fernandez was given the opportunity to take over as the team’s ace and he did not disappoint on opening day against the Colorado Rockies at Marlins Park Monday.

The 2013 National League Rookie of the Year went six innings, allowed one earned run on five hits, strucko0ut nine and walked none in the Marlins’ 10-1 victory over the Rockies. The Marlins took the lead in the third inning when Marcell Ozuna smacked a solo-shot to left off of Rockies’ starter Jorge De La Rosa. The Marlins would open the game up with a five-run fifth and cruised from there, but it was Fernandez who stole the show.

Fernandez showed off early that he will be an early-season candidate for the NL Cy Young award after he gave up back-to-back singles to Michael Cuddyer and Carlos Gonzalez only to set down Troy Tulowitzki with a strikeout and Justin Morneau with a ground-out to second in the first inning.

Getting out of that clearly gave Fernandez all the confidence he needed as he went on to retire the next 10 batters in order. Fernandez kept the Rockies guessing with a fastball that hit in the upper 90s countered with off-speed pitches that dropped off into the low 80s on the gun.

Fernandez dazzled last season with a 9.75 K/9 rate and a 2.19 E.R.A. If his performance against the Rockies is any indication of what the 20-year-old is capable of, Marlins fans know they have someone to look forward to watching at least once in every five games. Fernandez was one of the toughest pitchers to hit last season and if he becomes even more comfortable with his game, he will turn into the best pitcher in the National League.

Gregory T. Philson is an MLB contributing writer at Follow him on Twitter @GTPhilson, “Like” him on Facebook, and add him to your network on GoogleRead more here.

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