MIAMI (AP) — Jose Fernandez's grandmother attended the Miami Marlins' opener and saw him pitch for the first time since he left Cuba at age 15.
Olga Fernandez, who lives in Cuba, sat behind the Marlins' dugout for Monday's 10-1 victory over Colorado. She wore a Marlins uniform with her grandson's No. 16, and above that was the word "abuela" — Spanish for grandmother.
"It really does mean the whole world to be here and see him pitch for the Marlins in a major league game," she said. "To be here tonight is the ultimate feeling of all the emotions — happy, proud, love."
She sat with her daughter, who is Jose's mom.
Fernandez, a 21-year-old Cuban defector, became the youngest NL opening-day starter since Dwight Gooden in 1986, according to STATS. He tied a team opening-day record with nine strikeouts in six innings, and then got a hug from grandma.
"She told me, 'Good pitching. You've got to throw a lot more strikes, though,'" Fernandez said.