Coinciding with Fernando Valenzuela bobblehead night at Dodger Stadium, SportsNet LA is airing a “Fernandomania” documentary following their postgame coverage of the series finale between the Arizona Diamondbacks and Los Angeles Dodgers.
The hour-long special celebrates the 40th anniversary of Valenzuela’s historic rookie season that saw him help lead the Dodgers to a World Series title in 1981. The documentary is scheduled to begin airing at 11 p.m. PT, though is subject to change based on postgame coverage.
The special is narrated by Vin Scully, who recalls Valenzuela’s record-setting start to 1981 season along with the impact and excitement that came with “Fernandomania.”
Former Dodgers Mike Scioscia, Steve Garvey, Steve Sax and Reggie Smith, as well as Spanish language broadcaster Jaime Jarrín are featured in the special. They reflect on the highlights from Valenzuela’s rookie season, including Game 3 of the World Series against the New York Yankees.
In addition to the bobblehead giveaway, the Dodgers have honored Valenzuela this season with a mural in the renovated center field plaza and plaque to commemorate the 40th anniversary of his first full year with the club.
After #Dodgers postgame coverage tonight, @SportsNetLA is going to air “Fernandomania” at/around 11 p.m. It's narrated by Vin Scully and celebrates the 40th anniversary of Fernando Valenzuela’s rookie season. pic.twitter.com/vIbqCugWpd
— Matthew Moreno (@MMoreno1015) September 15, 2021
Valenzuela was a six-time All-Star and part of two World Series teams in his 11 seasons with the Dodgers.
Valenzuela understands why Dodgers haven’t retired No. 34
Although Valenzuela is one of the most influential and important Dodgers of all-time, his No. 34 has not been retired due to the organization’s unofficial policy of only doing so for uniform numbers of players who were elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
However, it has not been worn since he departed the team after the 1990 season. Valenzuela is still holding out hope of the Dodgers making an exception, but wouldn’t be opposed to another player wearing the No. 34.
“To me, it would be nice. But, right now I don’t see anyone wearing that number,” Valenzuela said this year.
“If anybody wants to wear it, it’s fine. If somebody is asking for that number, no problem. I know it’s going to happen sooner or later, but who knows? I don’t know what the Dodgers are thinking, but I’d be happy if somebody was wearing that number.”
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