The 20-year-old had never pitched above Single-A Jupiter before making the Marlins Opening Day roster out of spring training. The rookie has excelled despite the jump, posting a 2.55 ERA in 18 starts this season.
Fernandez threw 134 innings last year, and has already thrown 104 2/3 innings this campaign. Marlins manager Mike Redmond told Navarro that the plan all along has been to shut Fernandez down, but wants to see him get close to the 170 innings mark.
Redmond also discussed how he uses Fernandez during the game, telling Navarro that the team's long-term plans don't affect his decisions during the middle of a game:
"I go solely on how he's doing that day. If he has a chance to win a ballgame or whatever it is and he's going good then we'll let him throw seven or eight innings. I've never gone into a game going we can only let him throw six innings a day. I take it from game to game. If he has a chance to throw a complete game then I'll let him throw a complete game. If he keeps his pitches down and he has a chance he'll go out there."
Fernandez stated the he would like to finish out the season, but has no problems with the Marlins plan since they have been up front about their decision from the beginning.