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Dodgers News: Jaime Jarrín Calls for Los Angeles to Retire Fernando Valenzuela’s Number

For many years, the debate among Dodgers fans and Fernando Valenzuela has been the same. A lot of fans around the city of Los Angeles think that his number 34 should be retired, but the team has shown no indication that they would be interested in that. 

With one exception, the Dodgers generally retire the numbers of Hall of Fame players. Fernando is obviously not in the Hall of Fame, but he does hold a special spot in the history of the club and their fanbase. 

Wednesday night was a celebration of the legendary Dodgers pitcher that included a bobblehead giveaway. According to the LA Times’ Jorge Castillo, Spanish broadcaster Jaime Jarrín made his pitch for Fernando to have his number retired. 

Fernandomania obviously helped to shape a fanbase for generations when Valenzuela dominated in 1981. He would go on to win the Cy Young Award and the Rookie of the Year award that year as the Dodgers took home a World Series victory. 

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Fernando would go on to pitch a total of 11 years in Los Angeles and helped the Dodgers take home 2 World Series championships. What do you think? Should they retire his number 34, or should they continue to do that for Hall of Fame players?

Drop into the comments and let us know! 

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  1. The idea that only HOFers qualify is outdated. Fernando, Garvey, Maury Wills were Dodger HOFers and should be so honored. Someone else on another site said a team needs to not run out of numbers to use. But the last time I looked the Yankees had nearly twice as many retired numbers as the Dodgers and they still had plenty of numbers left

    1. Maury Will is not in the Hall of Fame but should be. It’s up to the Old Timers Committee, or what ever they call themselves now, to get it done. Very few MVP’s who have qualified have not made it and Wills is no exception, having done more to change his era of baseball than many who are already in the HoF.

      As far as Valenzuela, he definitely deserves to have his number retired by the Dodgers.

  2. Agreed, this is a no brainer. While the Dodgers are at it, retire #14 Gil Hodges; #6 Steve Garvey; #30 Maury Wills; #55 the Bulldog. And lets not forget to put Dodgers Hall of Famers who have no numbers like Zack Wheat up on the stadium columns.

  3. If you retire “34” there are others at least as deserving as Fernando. To give Fernando that recognition without including players like Gil Hodges, Maury Wills, Orel Hershiser, Pedro Guerrero, et al would be an injustice. What becomes the new standard for retiring a number?

    1. Fernando may have brought more people into Dodger Stadium than any player in history, and that continues to this day. His legacy extends far beyond just the Latino community. His story defines the very fabric of baseball in Los Angeles.

      1. Hyperbole doesn’t win a debate, and if you look at the actual attendance figures for increased home attendance Fernando was responsible for an additional 7,500 per game pitched in 1981 when he made 12 starts – roughly 90,000 fans. Total home attendance that season was 2,381,000 — hmmm. 1982/1983 the additional fans per game was 4,500; 1984-1986 5,600; 1987 – 1990 2100. My guess — Maury Wills, by far, accounted for more fans at Dodger Stadium when he played. I am not arguing against Fernando, he was a terrific pitcher, and a great ambassador for the Dodgers and MLB. My point is that there are other Dodgers who contributed mightily to the Dodgers success who are also deserving of number retirement

  4. Definitely, how big is the latino fan base? They deserve to see Fernando immortalize.

  5. The Latino fan base is huge and extends beyond LA. Games I’ve been to in Denver and Phoenix had plenty of Latinos sitting around me wearing Blue. Good, knowledgeable fans.

  6. They like to keep it to HOFers but haven’t retired 31 for Piazza. Just do it all ready. Make sure to do it for Gil, Maury, Orel and Garvey.

  7. Leaving it for Hall of Famers is usually a good way to go. But sometimes, there are exceptions. And Fernando is clearly one of those. His greatness in LA is truly outstanding!! But his presence in the very Latin community of Los Angeles was also outstanding, off the field, too. He is one of those cases where his number is very worthy of being retired, even if he is not in the Baseball Hall of Fame. But he is clearly, to me and many others, at least, a part of the Los Angeles Dodgers Hall of Fame.

  8. Fernando already has been treated better than the other Dodgers who have been mentioned in the comments. Indeed, he is the only one whose number has been “unofficialy” retired by the organization. No player has worn No. 34 since Valenzuela left LA in 1990. But the same can’t be said for, among others, Hodges’ 14, Garvey’s 6 and Wills’ 30. Based upon his on-field accomplishments, Gil Hodges is the most deserving.

  9. I vote for Dodgers to retire Fernando Valenzuela #34, he made a big impact on many people like me, to love and enjoy baseball and become a Dodgers fan.

  10. That documentary on Fernando on SNLA was well done. Without any question the man’s number should be retired “NOT” because he is the pride of the Latino fan base, but because he’s the pride of the DODGERS fan base. This society needs to quit segregating race. I always saw Fernando as a Dodger, not a Mexican pitcher….

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