Every Sunday at every Dodger homestand, you’ll see a celebration of Hispanic culture and the legacy of Latin-American Dodger players past and present.
Viva Los Dodger Days kicked off on April 18. Hoards of curious fans made their way to the Dodger Stadium parking lot to check out the events.
If you weren’t there, you missed a performance by Omar Esau, Kalibre Sierreño and La Klica Norteña. You also missed information booths, giveaways, games and more.
“This is something that’s very good for my heart and my people,” said Esau.
Concerts begin at 11 a.m. outside of center field in Lot G. On May 23, Salvador Santana, the son of legendary guitarist Carlos Santana, will perform at Viva Los Dodgers.
And you just might find a Dodger.
On April 18, former Dodger pitcher Bobby Castillo signed autographs and posed for pictures with the fans.
“Look at all these happy, smiling faces out here. Look at this place,” he said. “Viva los Dodgers.”
He has been called many things — El Toro, Cy Young Award Winner, Rookie of the Year, Dodger legend. Now he is a treasure.
On April 8, legendary Dodger pitcher and current Spanish-language broadcaster Fernando Valenzuela was honored by the Central City Association of Los Angeles at the 16th Annual “Treasures of Los Angeles” luncheon. The event was held at the J.W. Marriott at L.A. Live.
“Treasures of Los Angeles” honors Angelenos from all walks of life — culture, politics, athletics and people who give to their community.
“This is really big for me to be part of this. I say this is very big because to cancel my golf round, it’s got to be pretty good,” joked Valenzuela to the attendees.
In all seriousness, Valenzuela said it was an honor to be recognized in the city where he thrived as a Major League pitcher. Said L.A. City Council President Eric Garcetti:
“For me, Fernando is somebody I grew up with and have known and loved for years. As a native Angeleno, as a Latino, it makes me very proud that he’s one of our treasures.”
Another prominent Los Angeles athlete who was a contemporary of Valenzuela’s was also honored at the ceremony. Laker great James Worthy gave his own memory of Fernandomania.
“It was a lot of passion in Fernando and it was contagious throughout the city,” said Worthy.