Jose Fernandez’s Girlfriend Opens Up About Newborn Daughter

The girlfriend of the late Miami Marlins player Jose Fernandez is opening up about their newborn baby girl.

In an interview with PEOPLE, Maria Arias says her relationship with the MLB star “was definitely not love at first sight.” The two met years ago through family, became fast friends, and eventually fell in love.

The couple learned they were expecting in June of 2016, but Arias says she was scared because the relationship was so new.

“He made me feel so good about the pregnancy, that I didn’t care what I had to face,” Arias said of Fernandez’s excitement despite her worries.

Before the anticipated birth of their daughter, Fernandez was tragically killed in a boating accident last September when his power-boat struck a rocky jetty in Miami Beach waters. The crash instantly killed Fernandez and two other passengers on board – Eduardo Rivero and Emilio Jesus Macias.

Arias gave birth to Penelope Jo Fernandez, a name selected by the newborn’s father, on February 24th surrounded by her mother and the late ballplayer’s mother.

“He loved her from the moment she was conceived,” Arias said of Fernandez.

The new mother says she’s devoted to telling Penelope everything she can about her father.