Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
Fernando Valenzuela was selected to be on the cover of the 2023 Los Angeles Dodgers media guide. It’s a fitting tribute for the famed left-hander, who is set to have his No. 34 jersey retired by the Dodgers this season.
In 2020 and 2021, the Dodgers media guide featured multiple players from the respective season’s roster. Vin Scully was on the cover in 2016, his final season in the broadcast booth, and Jaime Jarrín received the honor last year.
Valenzuela went 141-116 with a 3.31 ERA in 331 games (320 starts) over parts of 11 seasons with the Dodgers.
In addition to becoming the first player in MLB history to win both Rookie of the Year and Cy Young Award in the same season, Valenzuela played a key role in the Dodgers winning the 1981 World Series.
— Matthew Moreno (@MMoreno1015) March 24, 2023
He finished the year 13-7 with a 2.48 ERA in 25 starts while leading all of Major League Baseball in shutouts (eight) and strikeouts (180).
Valenzuela remains tied to the Dodgers organization as an analyst for their Spanish-language broadcasts. He’ll call games alongside Pepe Yñiguez and José Mota this season.
The Dodgers are retiring No. 34 for Valenzuela during “Fernandomania” weekend from August 11-13 when the Colorado Rockies are at Dodger Stadium. Valenzuela is due to become the 12th player in Dodgers history to have his number retired.
Festivities will include an on-field ceremony during which Valenzuela’s number will be added to the Dodger Stadium Ring of Honor, plus special giveaway items.
Fernando Valenzuela grateful for Dodgers retiring 34
While no player has worn No. 34 since Valenzuela, the team officially immortalizing it holds a special meaning.
“It means a lot to me and my family, of course to the Dodgers, and all the fans,” Valenzuela recently said. “I think it’s going to be great. I’ve never been in this kind of situation. I’ve had bases loaded, but nothing like that. It’s going to be exciting and I’ll probably be thinking, ‘This happened to me?’ It’s going to be a great feeling.”
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