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Friend of Man Boating with Marlins Pitcher Jose Fernandez Texted Stay 'Close to Shore'

Joe Caveretta/Sun Sentinel/TNS via Getty Images(MIAMI) — The friend of a man who died along with Miami Marlins star pitcher Jose Fernandez, sent a text message warning to “please be careful” and “keep him close to shore,” according to a screenshot posted to social media.

The texts, posted to Instagram by Will Bernal Sunday, offered some potential insight into the circumstances surrounding the deadly crash in which Fernandez, 24, Eduardo Rivero, 25 and Emilio Macias, 27 died. The messages with Bernal telling Rivero to “please be careful” and to “keep him close to shore.”

Fernandez purportedly argued with his girlfriend in the hours before the crash, the Miami Herald reported, but ABC News has not confirmed that information. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, which is investigating, did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment regarding the allegations that Fernandez had been arguing with his girlfriend.

The boat carrying the men smashed into a jetty on Miami Beach Sunday, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission.

The boat was registered in Fernandez’s name, but it is not clear who was operating the boat at the time of the crash, the FWC said. Speeding is suspected to be a factor, and the investigation is ongoing.

In the texts, Rivero responds, “Trust me it’s not my time yet,” and Bernal texts back, telling Rivero to “keep Jose cool” as well as to turn on the Find My iPhone app.

“It’s on,” Rivero says. He then sends Bernal a map, the posts show.

Bernal wrote in the Instagram caption, posted Sunday, that it was the last conversation he had with Rivero and that he felt “sick” to his “stomach.”

“Everyone is talking about Jose Fernandez, but you died trying to be there for him and be a good friend,” Bernal wrote. “This doesn’t sit with me well.”

Bernal wrote that Rivero had gone “to help” Fernandez when the star pitcher called him. It was not clear with what and Bernal did not immediately comment to ABC News.

“I tried so hard to tell you not to go out on that boat,” Bernal said. “It didn’t feel right and we both knew it.”

The entire Marlins roster wore No. 16 jerseys to honor Fernandez in the game against the Mets Monday night, which was the first game since his death. Infielder Dee Gordon hit a leadoff home run, his first homer of the season, and fought back tears as he jogged toward home plate.

Gordon said after the game that Fernandez should have been “cheering” for him from the dugout. The Marlins won the game 7-3. The two teams will face off again tonight at Marlins Park.

The team canceled its Sunday game against the Atlanta Braves following the news of Fernandez’s death.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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