Mi­ami base­ball star dies in boat crash

Malta Independent - - NEWS -

Jose Fer­nan­dez, a pitcher for the Mi­ami Marlins base­ball team, has died in a boat crash at the age of 24.

The US Coast Guard said Fer­nan­dez was one of three peo­ple killed in the crash yes­ter­day, off Mi­ami Beach, Florida.

A sched­uled Marlins home game against the At­lanta Braves yes­ter­day has been can­celled.

The club said it was “dev­as­tated by the tragic loss of Jose Fer­nan­dez. Our thoughts and prayers are with his fam­ily at this very dif­fi­cult time”.

Mi­ami-Dade Fire Res­cue Chief Todd Garo­falo told lo­cal news sta­tion WSVN: “They found a boat that was up against the jet­ties. They did do an ini­tial search and they found three vic­tims - two on top of the wa­ter, one un­der­neath the boat and they had un­for­tu­nately passed away.”

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Con­ser­va­tion Com­mis­sion said the 32-foot ves­sel had a “se­vere im­pact” with large rocks that form part of the jetty.

The names of the other two in­di­vid­u­als are be­ing with­held un­til their rel­a­tives can be in­formed, the Coast Guard said.

Fer­nan­dez shared a picture on Instagram five days ago which ap­pears to show his girl­friend Carla Men­doza preg­nant.

The cap­tion reads: “I’m so glad you came into my life. I’m ready for where this jour­ney is gonna take us to­gether. #fam­i­ly­first.”

Rick Scott, the gover­nor of Florida, shared on Twit­ter a picture of he and Fer­nan­dez and wrote: “I had the op­por­tu­nity to meet Jose Fer­nan­dez in 2014. Our prayers are with his fam­ily and the Mi­ami Marlins.”

Boston Red Sox pitcher David Price said: “Hands down one of my favourite guys to watch pitch! He brought noth­ing but in­ten­sity and pas­sion.”

The Ma­jor League Base­ball or­gan­i­sa­tion re­leased a state­ment say­ing it was “stunned and dev­as­tated” by the news.

Fer­nan­dez was the club’s firstround draft pick in 2011 and was fin­ish­ing up on his finest sea­son in the ma­jor league, the Mi­ami Herald re­ported.

He made his de­but for the Marlins in 2013.

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