Dodgers Video: Stan Kasten Reveals To Fernando Valenzuela Number Is Being Retired

If you have a sombrero, throw it to the sky! The Los Angeles Dodgers announced they are finally retiring No. 34 in honor of Fernando Valenzuela during the 2023 season.

Valenzuela was a member of two World Series championship teams, won the 1981 Rookie of the Year and Cy Young Awards, was selected to six All-Star teams and also captured two Silver Slugger Awards (1981, 1983) during his 11 years with the Dodgers from 1980-90.

“I am incredibly happy that number 34 for the Los Angeles Dodgers will be retired forever,” Dodgers president and CEO Stan Kasten said in a statement. “The one question that I continuously get asked, more than anything else, is about retiring Fernando Valenzuela’s number. The citywide call by our fans to honor him is truly remarkable.”

Following the official announcement, which came during Dodgers FanFest on Saturday, the team released a video of Kasten giving the news to Valenzuela.

Valenzuela’s retired number will take its place among Pee Wee Reese (No. 1), Tommy Lasorda (No. 2), Duke Snider (No. 4), Gil Hodges (No. 14). Jim Gilliam (No. 19), Don Sutton (No. 20), Walter Alston (No. 24), Sandy Koufax (No. 32), Roy Campanella (No. 39), Jackie Robinson (No. 42), Don Drysdale (No. 53), and Hall of Fame broadcasters Vin Scully and Jaime Jarrín.

“To be a part of the group that includes so many legends is a great honor,” Valenzuela said. “But also for the fans — the support they’ve given me as a player and working for the Dodgers, this is also for them. I’m happy for all the fans and all the people who have followed my career. They’re going to be very excited to know that my No. 34 is being retired.”

Valenzuela’s career placed him among the all-time L.A. Dodgers leaders in wins (141, sixth), strikeouts (1,759, fifth), innings (2348.2, fourth), starts (320, fourth), complete games (107, fourth) and shutouts (29, fifth).

His career began with a run of eight consecutive victories, including five shutouts and a streak of 35 straight scoreless innings. This immediately gave rise to the phenomenon known as “Fernandomania,” in which fans would flock to his starts, both at home and on the road.

The Mexican left-hander almost single-handedly changed the Dodger fan base, and in his rookie year, he would go on to claim the NL Rookie of the Year, Cy Young Award and a World Championship in his first full season. He is the only Major Leaguer to ever win the Rookie of the Year and Cy Young Award in the same season.

When will Fernando Valenzuela’s jersey retirement take place?

Valenzuela will have his No. 34 retired this summer during a special three-day celebration at Dodger Stadium, called “Fernandomania” weekend, which takes place August 11-13 when the Dodgers host the Colorado Rockies.

The festivities kick off with the Ring of Honor ceremony on Friday Night, a collector’s edition bobblehead giveaway on Saturday night and a replica Valenzuela 1981 World Series ring on Sunday.

There will be many other elements planned for the entire weekend, which will be announced at a later time.

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