SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) – A Major League baseball player with local connections has passed away. Tony Fernandez died Saturday of complications from Polycystic Kidney Disease.
Fernandez spent four seasons with the Syracuse Chiefs in the early 1980’s. He went on to play shortstop for the Toronto Blue Jays. A five-time All-Star, Fernandez won four straight Gold Glove Awards from 1986-89 and a World Series in 1993 with Toronto.
Local fans may remember Fernandez for his time with the New York Yankees. He played for the bombers in 1995, losing his starting job the next spring to a fractured elbow. Hall of Famer Derek Jeter took over the position after Fernandez’s injury.
Fernandez also spent time with the San Diego Padres, New York Mets and Cleveland Indians among other teams.
Fernandez was diagnosed with Polycystic Kidney Disease in 2017. Earlier this year, he was hospitalized for complications from the disease and was placed in a medically induced coma after developing pneumonia. Fernandez was 57.
His son Jonathan spent parts of the 2010 and 2011 seasons playing in Auburn with the Doubledays.