Dodgers to Host Mexican League Game

The Dodgers will host the first ever regular season Mexican League (Liga Mexicana de Béisbol) game in Los Angeles on Saturday, May 16, when the league's top two teams, the Diablos Rojos of Mexico City and the Sultanes of Monterrey, will play against one another at Dodger Stadium in La Serie Azul (The Blue Series).

  The announcement was made in Mexicali, BC on Mexican Constitution Day (Día de la Constitución) at a news conference hosted by the Dodgers' Spanish-language broadcast team consisting of Hall of Famer Jaime Jarrín, Dodger pitching legend Fernando Valenzuela, and Pepe Yñiguez.

  "We have a long-standing relationship with our fans both in Mexico and those of Mexican descent around the world and we do not take that for granted," said Dodger Director of International Relations Joseph Reaves. "This historic game will provide our fans with a chance to see the two most storied franchises in that country play at one of the most storied stadiums in America. We're excited to open our doors to our neighbors and hope that this will continue to help spread the game of baseball internationally."  

  The Dodgers will be the first MLB team to present a Mexican League game in its venue as an individually ticketed event. La Serie Azul is being played with the support of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Minor League Baseball, the California League, and the Mexican League. The game will showcase the top talent of the Mexican League as last season, both Monterrey and Mexico City played in the Mexican League championship with the Diablos Rojos finishing as the league's top team.

   La Serie Azul will take place at Dodger Stadium at 6:05 p.m. on May 16. Seats in the Family Section, which will be the alcohol-free outfield Pavilions, are $5, Field Level tickets outside the bases are $20, Field Level tickets between the bases are $30, Loge Level tickets outside the bases are $10, Loge Level tickets between the bases are $20, and all Reserved seating is $10. Parking will be $5. Tickets are available beginning today and can be purchased online at dodgers.com, losdodgers.com, and by calling 1-866-Dodgers.  

   The Dodgers' long history with Mexico has been well documented, most notably when Fernando Valenzuela made his Major League debut with the Dodgers in 1980. The phenomenon of "Fernandomania" that ensued traveled south to his native Sonora and throughout all of Mexico. Valenzuela's legacy solidified Mexico's affinity for the Dodgers and offset the team's close relationship with the country and locally with the Hispanic community in Los Angeles.

  Last season, pitcher Esteban Loaiza became the 17th Dodger born in Mexico and ninth pitcher joining Victor Alvarez, Elmer Dessens, Antonio Osuna, Jose Peña, Dennys Reyes, Vicente Romo, Ismael Valdez, and Valenzuela. The MLB record for most career wins by a Mexican-born pitcher is topped by two former Dodgers, Valenzuela (173) and Loaiza (125). 

   The Dodgers have traveled to both cities in Mexico that they will host for La Serie Azul. In 1991, the team took a trip to Monterrey during Spring Training for a two-game exhibition against the Industriales of Monterrey and the Milwaukee Brewers. The defending 1963 World Champion Dodgers also played exhibition games in Mexico City prior to the 1964 season against the Diablos Rojos.

   Most recently, the Dodgers played the Mets in a two-game series at Mexico City's Estadio Foro Sol in 2003. This year, the Dodgers will host the semi-final and final games of the 2009 World Baseball Classic and Dodgers' Hall of Fame manager Tommy Lasorda will serve as Global Ambassador. Lasorda played several exhibition games in Mexico while managing the Dodgers and also managed for the Dominican Republic te

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