CHICAGO — Julio Urias had a new number waiting in his locker in advance of his second major league start: 7.
The pitcher said he’s worn the number since he was 5 years old. He gave it up with the Dodgers because Alex Guerrero had the number; Urias wore 78 in spring training the last two seasons, and again in his debut last Friday in New York. But Guerrero was designated for assignment Tuesday, clearing the way for Urias to have his old number back.
Urias is the first full-time pitcher in franchise history with a single-digit jersey number since Bobo Newsom in 1943.
“It’s the first number I ever played with, and it’s a number that reminds me of when I was a child,” Urias said through an interpreter.
Alex Torres, the Dodgers’ clubhouse attendant on the trip, said the club was aware of Urias’ preference prior to this week. He said the Dodgers (and every major league team) have an extra supply of letters and numbers from Majestic, the league’s official apparel company. Stitching Urias’ new jersey together on short notice was not an issue.
Here’s more from Urias’ afternoon scrum: