Ivan Rodriguez will have his No. 7 jersey retired by the Texas Rangers in August, the club announced late Friday night at the Dr Pepper Awards Dinner.
The Rangers didn’t announce a date for the ceremony, but it will come only a few weeks after Rodriguez is inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. He was voted for election to the Hall on Wednesday.
The Rangers have previously retired only two numbers — No. 34 belonging to Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan and No. 26 belonging to former manager Johnny Oates. All 30 MLB teams retired the No. 42 belonging to Jackie Robinson.
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“It’s been a crazy four or five days,” Rodriguez said. “I’ve played with six of them, but this organization is No. 1 in my heart. It’s great. It’s another great honor. That’s how much respect I’ve gotten from the organization, to do that for me. I knew they were probably going to do that and were waiting for the right time. I’m glad they’re going to do it the year I go into the Hall of Fame.”
Rodriguez spent 12 seasons with the Rangers, batting .304 with 1,747 hits, 352 doubles, 217 homers and 842 RBIs. He was the American League MVP in 1999, a 13-time Gold Glove winner, a 14-time All-Star and a key contributor to the Rangers’ first three division title in franchise history in 1996, 1998 and 1999.
In his MVP season, Rodriguez batted .332 with 35 homers, 113 RBIs and 116 runs, and is the only catcher in MLB history with a season with a .330 average, 35 homers, 110 RBIs and 110 runs.
Rodriguez remains the all-time MLB leader in games caught (2,427) and holds the record for most All-Star Game starts (12).
He collected 2,844 hits in a 21-year career and finished with a .296 batting average, 311 home runs and 1,332 RBIs. He also threw out 42 percent of attempted base stealers.
He is also only one of five players to achieve a .295 average, 2,800 hits, 550 doubles, 300 homers and 1,300 RBIs. The others in the group are Hank Aaron, Barry Bonds, George Brett and Stan Musial.