Gonzo to be honored

HOUSTON — The D-backs will honor the hero of the 2001 World Series  on Aug. 29 when they host Luis Gonzalez Appreciation Night at Chase Field.
That the D-backs have scheduled the event is probably an indication that a deal is close for Gonzalez to return to the organization.

The D-backs are known to have discussed having Gonzalez, who was arguably the most popular player in franchise history, take a role in the front office.

It seems likely that the Luis Gonzalez Appreciation Night will celebrate that fact with a retirement ceremony coming at a later date in which the club would invite people important to his career to also attend.

“This organization has meant a lot to me,” Gonzalez said.

There had been speculation that Gonzalez would be activated for one game similar to what the Giants did with J.T. Snow last season, but according to team president and CEO Derrick Hall, Gonzalez did not wish to do that.

Instead, the team will honor Gonzalez with a video tribute during on on-field pregame ceremony and the first 25,000 fans through the gates will also receive a commemorative “Gonzo” t-shirt.

In an interview with MLB.com recently, Gonzalez said that his playing career was all but over after waiting through the summer for a chance to play one more season.

“My family has helped me out tremendously with the adjustment,” Gonzalez said. “I know that they would have liked me to have played again, but you know it is what it is. I can’t look back at it. I’m very happy with my career, the years that I played. Where I grew up baseball was a strong passion. I got to play for a long time, I got to meet a lot of great people, played against a lot of great players and played with some Hall of Famers.” “This organization has meant a lot to me,” Gonzalez said.

The game will also feature a one-hour post-game concert featuring country recording artists Montgomery Gentry followed by a fireworks show, presented by Gila River Casinos.

Fans can purchase tickets to the game at the Chase Field ticket office, by phone at 602-514-8400 or online.

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