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Jered Weaver’s No. 36 immortalized at Blair Field with jersey retirement

The Bohl Diamond at Blair Field crowd packed the stands Friday night prior to their matchup against No. 16 UCI, to honor and celebrate former pitcher Jered Weaver on one of the most storied and accomplished careers any athlete has put together in Long Beach State history. 

The pregame festivities featured Weaver accompanied by his family, three LBSU Hall of Fame coaches John McConnell, Dave Snow and the head coach during his Dirtbags’ tenure Mike Weathers. Weaver credited his former coach for serving as a father-like figure to him.

“To say this is an honor is an understatement. I never thought in a million years I’d have my name on the wall,” Weaver said. “When you come to Long Beach that’s not what you want to do, you try and win ball games and get your team to Omaha.”

The ceremony concluded with Weaver’s No. 36 being unveiled on the wall in right field to the left of the “Jered Weaver Bullpen” and finished with Weaver throwing a strike to his oldest son Aden for the ceremonial first pitch.

During his three-year LBSU tenure, Weaver established himself as one of the most dominant pitchers in the nation on his way to the top of the record books in almost every major pitching statistical category at The Beach.

Weaver holds the Long Beach State and Big West conference record in both wins (37) and strikeouts (431). He also sits atop the list in starts (55), innings pitched (370), strikeouts in a game (17) and consecutive wins in Dirtbags history.

The 14 consecutive wins he compiled were to start his historic 2004 season, where he led the country in wins (15) and strikeouts (213) on his way to becoming the first-ever Dirtbag to take home National Player of the Year honors. 

The video game-type numbers actually landed him on the cover of a video game, as he was even featured as the cover athlete on EA’s MVP 07 NCAA Baseball. 

“Now that I’m five years separated from baseball, and 20 years separated from Long Beach, it’s quite the honor to look out there now and see your name, it’s starting to become realistic,” Weaver said.

After setting the college baseball world ablaze, Weaver would be selected 12th overall in the 2004 Major League Baseball by the Anaheim Angels, keeping the kid from Simi Valley in Southern California. 

Weaver got the call to the big leagues on May 27, 2006, just 18 miles from Blair Field at Angel Stadium where he threw a masterful seven shutout innings, punching out five batters on his way to his first career Major League win over the Baltimore Orioles.

After a top-five finish in American League Rookie of the Year voting, Weaver soon established himself as the ace of the Angels starting rotation. 

From getting the ball on Friday nights at Blair to stacking up a franchise-record seven Opening Day starts for the Halos, Weaver’s stuff translated to the bigs seamlessly. 

The 6’7 right-hander made the AL all-star team every year from 2010 (at his home ballpark in Anaheim) through 2012, including getting the starting nod for the 2011 MLB All-Star Game.

In May of 2012, Weaver etched his name in baseball history tossing a no-hitter against the Minnesota Twins. He threw 121 pitches that night, striking out nine and allowing just one walk, getting it done at home in front of 27,288 fans at the Big A.

Weaver would wrap up his illustrious 12-year MLB career in a San Diego Padres uniform, a true SoCal lifer through and through. He finished with 150 wins in over 2,000 innings pitched while striking out 1,621 batters. 

“I’m truly blessed, honestly there’s so many different places you can go to play and to get drafted by a local team, I grew up a Dodgers fan but Anaheim was the next best thing,” Weaver said. 

“To be there for 12 years was a tremendous honor, and to move down the street to San Diego, I think the reason I took the hometown discount with the Angels is because I loved having my friends and family there, to come to the stadium whenever they could and share those moments with me. You can’t put a price on that kind of stuff.”

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