At the MLB All-Star Game, Washington National Bryce Harper made a splash in cleats honoring Jose Fernandez, the Miami Marlins pitcher who died in a September 2016 boating accident.
The game was held at Marlins Park, the Miami stadium Fernandez pitched at before his untimely death at the age of 24, making the tribute especially moving.
Each of Harper’s Under Armour cleats featured different renderings of Fernandez, as well as the former Rookie of the Year’s number (16) enclosed in a circle. Harper posted a photograph of the elaborate cleats on Twitter from the locker room before the game, writing “For you Nino!” The Nationals’ right fielder was not the only one to pay homage to Fernandez: Carlos Martinez of the St. Louis Cardinals drew a “16” on the mound in memory of the Marlin pitcher.
Prior to the game, it seemed Harper would honor the city of Miami in a different way with his shoe style. Under Armour unveiled an All-Star Game-themed Harper shoe on Monday: the Harper 2 “Miami Bryce,” a hot-pink and teal cleat with a palm tree design.
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The 2015 National League MVP also gave a nod to the television program”Miami Vice” while walking the red carpet prior to the game. Clad in a a dusty-rose Stitched suit and a pale pink shirt, which he paired with white boat shoes, Harper resembled a character from the classic ’80s TV show.