Fernandez looking, dressing the part
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Shortly after getting the call that he was headed to the big leagues, Jose Fernandez was immediately told he needed to dress the part.
Fernandez, making the leap from Class A, was informed last Friday by Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria that he was being called up.
The news completely caught the 20-year-old off guard, because he was anticipating opening in Double-A. But when it was decided that Nathan Eovaldi and Henderson Alvarez were headed to the disabled list, Miami opted to promote Fernandez.
Fernandez was notified while still in Jupiter, Fla. It was about 5:30 p.m. ET, and he was at the Gardens Mall in Palm Beach Gardens.
“I was eating at the mall,” he said. “There were like 12 guys eating at the mall.”
Minor League pitching coordinator Wayne Rosenthal called him.
“I got a call from Rosey, he was like, ‘Hey, you’ve got to come to the field as soon as possible,’ ” Fernandez said. “I was like, ‘Hey, I’m in trouble.’ ”
Fernandez headed back to the Roger Dean Stadium complex, where he spoke with Loria.
It was an emotional moment for Fernandez, who defected Cuba for the United States in 2008. He called his mother, Maritza, who lives in Tampa. She broke down and cried, and Fernandez was a little teary.
After informing his family, Fernandez was told he needed some business suits to wear for travel.
So he went back to the mall, and at Nordstrom’s purchased three suits — gray, navy blue and black.
Fernandez will make his big league debut on Sunday against the Mets at Citi Field.
— Joe Frisaro