Jose Fernandez’s death has put the Miami Marlins in tragic company with the Cleveland Indians.
The Marlins pitcher died early Sunday morning in a boating accident off the coast of Miami Beach. The circumstances of Fernandez’s death prompted an outpouring of grief around Major League Baseball, but it also resurfaced memories of a similar boating accident, which claimed the lives of two Cleveland Indians pitchers during Spring Training in 1993.
Tim Crews and Steve Olin were killed age 31 and 27, respectively, in a fatal accident that also injured teammate Bobby Ojeda. Like Fernandez, the three Indians players were boating in Florida when their vehicle unexpectedly collided with a dock with disastrous results.
Cleveland struggled to cope with the tragedy, going 76-86 that season and finishing sixth out of seven teams in the American League East.
The Marlins now must face the near- and long-term future without their 24-year-old ace, who died much too soon.
Perhaps the Indians and Cleveland can offer the Marlins insight into how an organization and city best can conduct the grieving process.
Thumbnail photo via Robert Mayer/USA TODAY Sports Images