Jose Maria Fernandez was born in Guanabacoa, Havana, Cuba.
Fernandez (shown playing for the Cuban Stars in this photo that was up for auction at Lelands in December 2004) played 24 winters in Cuba, playing for San Francisco, White Sox, Almendares, America, Marianao, Cuba, Santa Clara and Cienfuegos.
According to Who's Who in Cuban Baseball, 1878-1961, Fernandez, the older brother of Cuban Baseball Hall of Famer star Rodolfo Fernandez, batted over .300 nine times.
He also managed three seasons in the Cuban League, one with Santa Clara and two with Marianao, but never led a team higher than third in the standings.
In the Negro leagues, Fernandez played for Alex Pompez's Cuban Stars from 1916-1929 and 1931-1934.