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#pounditSaturday, February 4, 2023

Dave Stewart offers update on A’s jersey retirement situation

Dave Stewart looking on

Sep 6, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks general manager Dave Stewart reacts during an MLB game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Former Oakland A’s pitcher Dave Stewart expressed frustration with the franchise earlier this week over the status of his jersey retirement ceremony, but it appears the confusion has been cleared up.

The A’s had announced in 2019 that Stewart would have his No. 34 retired during the 2020 season. The ceremony was postponed indefinitely due to the pandemic, but there was no word of a rescheduled ceremony last year. The team’s 2022 promotional schedule makes no mention of a ceremony for Stewart, either. A fan asked Stewart about the plans on Twitter Tuesday, and the former pitcher sounded extremely irritated with the A’s in his response.

That led to a conversation between Stewart and A’s president David Kaval, who assured Stewart that there will be a ceremony.

“He did not tell me when. He just said that they are planning it and they’re looking at dates, and just to expect that the celebration’s going to be top-notch and a very good celebration,” Stewart told Matt Kawahara of the San Francisco Chronicle on Thursday. “It’s something that he and (A’s owner John Fisher) want to do, and they want to be sure that it’s done properly and done right.”

Stewart said he did not intend to express frustration in his tweet but was just responding honestly. Kaval praised Stewart in a statement to The Chronicle.

“No one has made a larger impact on our organization than Dave Stewart,” Kaval said. “We are honored to retire his number and excited to celebrate his legacy this season.”

No. 34 is already out of circulation with the A’s, as they retired it for Rollie Fingers in 1993. Stewart had worn the same number prior to it being retired for Fingers.

Stewart was MVP of the World Series in 1989 when Oakland swept the San Francisco Giants. He had four consecutive 20-win seasons for the A’s from 1987-1990. He was clearly irritated with the team over his retirement ceremony, but all is well that ends well.

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