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Jose Fernandez rode 600 miles a week on his bike this offseason

Feb 17, 2014, 9:20 AM EDT

jose fernandez getty Getty Images

We’re still on the conditioning stories because, well, that’s all that’s really happening so far. This one is good though. Marlins ace Jose Fernandez and his love affair with cycling:

Fernandez wasn’t just tooling around soaking up sun and fresh air. Riding in a peloton that typically contained at least 50 serious cycling enthusiasts and grew to as many as 200 on some weekend rides, he maintained a frenetic pace for nearly 600 miles a week.

His bike is suh-weet, too. A Specialized S-Works Venge racer that probably cost him around $10K. And it also allowed him to report to camp at 215 pounds after pitching at around 240 last season.

Pitching is all in the legs, right? That’s what people say anyway. If so, Fernandez is gonna have a whale of a season.

  1. Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 9:30 AM

    Nobody who knows anything about El Keed’s history is going to question his willpower. Nobody.

    But ten grand for a bike? If I were J. Paul Getty, I’d still feel like an idiot for spending that much on it.

    • vivabear - Feb 17, 2014 at 11:02 AM

      You are not J Paul Getty….but you are an idiot.

      • happytwinsfan - Feb 17, 2014 at 11:51 AM

        i haven’t been participating in an internet discussion site for very long and i’ve been having trouble understanding what is mean’t by the term “troll”. i knew about the story of the crabby little creature who lives under a bridge demanding payment every time someone passed over, but i didn’t see the connection. now i do.

        thank you.

      • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 1:06 PM

        Sewerbear doesn’t hide under the bridge. He hides in the cesspool and demands a tithe whenever someone flushes the toilet.

    • happytwinsfan - Feb 17, 2014 at 11:18 AM

      some people spend tens if not hundreds of thousands on shiny rocks to wear around their fingers or neck.

      • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 1:09 PM

        Which I also find idiotic. I would prefer to spend a couple of hundred on a bike – at most – and the other ninety eight hundred on a car, a new room for the house, or maybe a round the world cruise to study outbreaks of new viruses in a controlled and luxurious environment.

      • historiophiliac - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:06 PM

        Mind-boggling, isn’t it?

      • skids003 - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:20 PM

        I would have thought you would donate the 10K to a good cause Gator.

      • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:25 PM

        I would just be reinforcing and validating the exploitive nature of capitalism if I did. I prefer to pay excessive taxes to the Obamazoid socialist state and let it do its good works on my behalf.

      • skids003 - Feb 17, 2014 at 4:27 PM

        I sure hope you’re kidding. Is that how the liberal mind ‘thinks,” that they can spend my money better than I can?

      • historiophiliac - Feb 17, 2014 at 4:45 PM

        skids, if you donate to a charity you’re letting someone else spend your money too. Unless you are giving direct payments to someone, it’s the same difference. And, actually, pooling money and having regulations for using it is more efficient than all of us trying to help individuals on our own. Plus, then people aren’t forced to sit through sermons or something to get assistance.

      • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 5:59 PM

        Of course a liberal can spend better than a teabagger, since by definition teabaggers don’t want to spend anything.

    • notsofast10 - Feb 17, 2014 at 1:49 PM

      Well the Old Gator, apparently you don’t know so much about cycling. $10K bikes are fairly common in the cycling/triathlon scene and makes a HUGE difference in performance. I would be surprised if he was on anything cheaper riding 600 miles a week! The only problem I have is riding in such a big group, it is very easy for someone to get tangled with you or in front of you and go down! Not sure the Marlins are cool with their future on a bike in a peloton 600 miles a week.

      • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:21 PM

        notsofast10: you’re certainly right about that – I take my twenty five buck yard sale three speed to and from Publix for exercise and the only racing I do is with the afternoon thunderstorms to get home with my pancake mix still dry in its box. That there are ten grand (and, I’m sure, way up) bikes out there doesn’t surprise me. That adding on thousands of dollars to their price doesn’t surprise me either. Upon whether or not all that extra money really alters the laws of kinesiology sufficiently to make it worth the price, I shall reserve judgment while confessing to irremediable skepticism.

        On the other hand, I’ve watched my brother repeatedly take his beloved BMW to the shop where it spends as much time on the lift as the road while I motor along merrily in my Dodge Caliber with 130,000 miles on it and invest less in its annual service than he spent on his wheel covers. Then I get to listen to him raving about all the features his fine car has. And I smile. And I smile. And I smile. I smile because I know (a) the car he stopped by to visit in is a loaner under his perpetual warranty, which he needs because his beloved Yuppiemobile is perpetually hiccupping, or (b) because, unlike him, I need not live in fear of seagulls and grackles. Nothing feels like my car is worth crapping on.

        What’s more, I can turn my trusty ole Caliber into a pickup and load it up with palm fronds and tree cuttings to cart to the local landfill. In the process, I get a good workout lugging hundreds of pounds old fronds and of bags of rotting vegetation back and forth across the yard. I even get to encounter a hitherto unsuspected new species of gecko, skink or anole hiding in the detritus, which I duly note in my armchair naturalist’s log of invasive hybrids. So, I exercise my mind as well as my body, such as it is.

        And with the backs seats folded down, I can haul half a season’s worth of fronds, pinnate and palmate, and cut up banana trunks (I save the leaves for baking) four miles to the landfill. And I still have room to take along Fido, my odd Hemingway hound, to pounce on any previously unnoticed vermin that might try to get under the seats. Let’s see my brother try that with his wonderful BMW!

        As far as how the Feesh front orifice feels about pelotons, I suppose they’re no more or less terrified of nuclear war than the rest of us.

  2. rbj1 - Feb 17, 2014 at 9:38 AM

    Much better than jogging on a hard surface, easier on the knees.

  3. sophiethegreatdane - Feb 17, 2014 at 9:41 AM

    >>Jose Fernandez rode 600 miles a week on his bike this offseason.

    Poor guy! You think with the money these guys make, he could have bought himself a Prius or something.

    Wait…he did that *on purpose*?

    • yahmule - Feb 17, 2014 at 11:53 AM

      No kidding. I used to use my legs like some kind of sucker, but then I got a little something called a driver’s license.

      • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 6:00 PM

        You’re lucky to have had parents who understood what it would take to keep your legs out of trouble.

  4. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Feb 17, 2014 at 9:54 AM

    Yea well I walked 500 miles. And I walked 500 more. Just to be that man who falls down at your door.

    • yahmule - Feb 17, 2014 at 11:51 AM

      Those guys made 19 albums.

    • DelawarePhilliesFan - Feb 17, 2014 at 1:41 PM

      Which one are you?

  5. chaseutley - Feb 17, 2014 at 10:41 AM

    This will be an interesting case study. I’d be interested to hear what other training techniques he employed.

    In my experience, guys who specialize in cycling and distance running often sacrifice some agility, upper body strength, and overall athleticism in the process. Then again, Fernandez has a professional training staff to fall back on for advice.

    It will be interesting to see how this plays out. Thanks for the story!

    • captainwisdom8888 - Feb 17, 2014 at 1:45 PM

      u just thanked him for the story…

  6. paperlions - Feb 17, 2014 at 11:33 AM

    Okay, if no one else is going to go there, I will.

    Surprised he didn’t focus on swimming.

    Just a joke. I have nothing but respect for Fernandez. Love watching him pitch. Love the passion. Amazing story of perseverance.

    • historiophiliac - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:07 PM

      Shhh, I’m watching hockey! At work!

      • paperlions - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:12 PM

        I’m going to need to figure out how to do that to watch the Men’s game on Wednesday. For games at 7:30, I can just come to work late.

      • historiophiliac - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:14 PM

        I missed the biathalon today and will miss ice dancing tonight. I took the liberty of changing the TV’s at work now though. ;)

    • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 5:47 PM

      That’s okay, I liked the swimming line. I was going to use it myself but I was afraid it would be in bad taste.

      I mean, insufficiently bad taste.

  7. ch0psuey - Feb 17, 2014 at 1:57 PM

    I like this kid. Didnt know about his biking but know he loves his cars. Has a nice tuned GTR. Vid of it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9fUF0Mby68

    • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 5:58 PM

      Right, and at the end he peels out of that lot like Yasiel Puig. Frankly, I think the Feesh front orifice has bigger things to worry about than El Keed biking in a piñata, or whatever they call it….

  8. historiophiliac - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:07 PM

    Body Issue pics or it didn’t happen!

  9. jolink653 - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:34 PM

    I hope this kid stays healthy because he’s filthy as a pitcher and it’s exciting for baseball fans to be able to watch him every start

    • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 2:56 PM

      He should. He’s a fitness freak and build compactly, so there shouldn’t be a whole lot of wasted torque on his elbows or shoulders when he throws. And Craig mentioned the legs – when you watch him pitch, note that he really uses those powerful legs of his to propel his upper body forward. I imagine he’ll have his share of aches and pains but he shouldn’t be much of a long term DL habitue. And of course, his starts are all that stood between the Feesh and 30th place in attendance last season.

      • vivabear - Feb 17, 2014 at 4:40 PM

        So now ur an expert on pitching mechanics Old Felcher? And sports injury prevention…

      • Old Gator - Feb 17, 2014 at 5:46 PM

        Yep. And what are you an expert on, aside from making a vulgar, juvenile jackass of yourself on a routine basis?

  10. r8rnuck - Feb 17, 2014 at 4:24 PM

    i’m a cleveland fan and i’m excited to watch this kid pitch. very fun to watch

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