As the 2020 Los Angeles Dodgers Love L.A. Community Tour progresses toward FanFest at Dodger Stadium on Saturday, the organization staged two events that incorporated its past with the present.
Tuesday began with Fernando Valenzuela visiting Metro Division 13 in downtown L.A. He fittingly arrived on a bus — driven by the Metro employee of the year — and posed for photos and signed autographs for several Metro personnel, including some who operate the Dodger Stadium express.
Metro spokesperson Luis Inzunza was among those on hand, and with him was a ticket stub from Valenzuela’s no-hitter against the St. Louis Cardinals. “He’s a role model,” Inzunza told DodgerBlue.com after having his ticket autographed by the Dodgers legend.
“I remember when he first started his career, my dad used to take us to games because of him.”
“It’s a great honor to be at this event,” Valenzuela said. “Everything they do is great for the people of the city. The hard work all the bus drivers do.”
Worthy of Love Birthday Celebration
Also on Tuesday, the Dodgers partnered with local non-profit, Worthy of Love, to host a birthday celebration at Dodger Stadium for children experiencing homelessness. The night featured an array of activities, including a dog petting area, plus a tour of Dodger Stadium.
Matt Beaty and Alex Verdugo surprised the group of children and were greeted with loud cheers as they walked into the Stadium Club. Beaty and Verdugo then participated in a dance battle with the kids before making their way around the various stations.
“It’s a great event,” Verdugo told DodgerBlue.com. “Kids who are homeless and on Skid Row, it’s their birthday month, so the Dodgers put a whole event together with food, DJ, activities, pets, face painting. It’s really to give the people who aren’t as fortunate or going through hard times, giving them a couple hours to relax and have fun.
“And for me, it’s have fun, make memories and make these kids smile. Because at the same time they’re making me laugh. The things they come up with is amazing. It’s a lot of fun.”
Verdugo added he felt he edged Beaty in dancing but wasn’t quite at the level of a few others. “There were some kids in there that were veteran dancers,” Verdugo said with a laugh.
“I was on the rookie level.”
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