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Bats, balls and handles in warning zone


“ANDbe protected is very expensive! Charge a pot per ticket! ”Shouts a fan, beer in hand, as a volunteer decides to go sing the strikes and balls in an improvised baseball game on the Etchohuaquila dirt field, where the legend Fernando Valenzuela threw the first balls.

Right field, the area that El Toro patrolled when he decided to play baseball for the first time at age 13, sports a peculiar “warning zone,” with a tire that defines the home run hit.

Etchohuaquila, birthplace of a baseball legend.

Six decades have passed since Fernando Valenzuela saw the first light in this ranchería and the memory is still valid, at least in name.

If someone asks about the Valenzuela, it is very likely that more than half of Etchohuaquila will come to the call. One of the catchers of the children’s baseball game proudly carries that surname, although he has no relationship with the greatest Mexican baseball player.

Any corner is good for macaning.

A motorcycle, the most widely used means of transportation in Etchohuaquila, bears a plate with the surname Valenzuela and so you could continue to go with the lady from the store, the lady who lives next to the baseball field and a large part of this town.

It is a very common surname in this area, ”explains Uriel Valenzuela Valenzuela, who is not related to the famous pitcher, whom he has only seen in documentaries.

Right field, with a tire that defines the home run hit.

The converted earth diamond is practically the same one in which the Bull began to write his history, although they say that it was larger before.

They have been cutting it short because of so much construction, ”says Nacho Parra, the former league’s first manager, in a muffled voice.

Last August, the local authorities presumed a remodel in this baseball field, although it was more like a political coup in order to launch a promise than for a real change.

They only painted the benches and changed one area of ​​the mesh, but the rest is the same ”, says a local.

Fernando’s birthday? No, well, wish you congratulations. Hopefully one day I can do something to improve the field ”, concludes Valenzuela Valenzuela.

In this dirt field, the Bull was born, sportingly. Photo: Héctor Linares

Happy birthday!

Congratulations messages for Fernando Valenzuela were present on social networks, highlighting the career of the best Mexican baseball player in history.

Today we celebrate horseback riding: Happy birthday, Toro! Wrote the MLB Mexico account on the day the Sonoran reached six decades.

Águilas de Mexicali, Toro Valenzuela’s last team, also sent his congratulations to the former Dodgers pitcher.

Today is the birthday of the culprit of Fernandomanía, inspiring many on and off the field ”, it was written on the twitter account of the Mexicali team, while several fans joined the celebration telling anecdotes related to Valenzuela.

The account of the Dodgers, brand new Major League champion, also remembered one of its best pitchers in recent years with a simple message: “El Toro, Happy birthday, Fernando!”