Advertisement

Detroit Tigers to retire Jim Leyland's No. 10 this year: Here's when they'll do it

The big summer for former Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland just got a little bit bigger.

Ilitch Companies announced on Monday that the Tigers, owned by Christopher Ilitch, will retire Leyland's No. 10 in a ceremony at Comerica Park on Aug. 3 before the 6:10 p.m. game against the Kansas City Royals.

The ceremony will come two weeks after Leyland is inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Leyland earned baseball immortality after the Contemporary Era committee elected the longtime manager into Cooperstown last December.

“Jim Leyland is a quintessential baseball man and embodies so much of what our fans in Detroit loved and appreciated about his time as our manager,” Ilitch said in a released statement. “Jim demonstrated a gritty passion in leading his team, a relentless pursuit of excellence, and an uncanny ability to connect with people, which Jim did with the Tigers and throughout his career. Given those intangibles, combined with his tenure as a winning manager who was instrumental in an era of success, I feel it’s only fitting that he now has his number retired and a permanent place on the Comerica Park wall.”

CARLOS MONARREZ: Jim Leyland doesn’t know how right he is about the cap for Baseball Hall of Fame plaque

Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland in the dugout in the seventh inning of Game 4 of the ALDS Detroit Tigers vs. New York Yankees in Detroit on Tuesday, October 4, 2011.
Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland in the dugout in the seventh inning of Game 4 of the ALDS Detroit Tigers vs. New York Yankees in Detroit on Tuesday, October 4, 2011.

Leyland managed four major league teams after a long tenure as a minor league coach and manager that began in the Tigers organization. He is just as synonymous with the Pittsburgh Pirates, with which he managed from 1986-96 and helped lead the team to three National League East Division crowns. He spent just two seasons with the Florida Marlins, including leading that team to the 1997 World Series title. After a rough 1999 in Colorado, Leyland got the call from the Tigers, the team he signed with out of Perrysburg, Ohio, in 1963.

From 2006-13, Leyland managed the Tigers to 700 regular season wins, three AL Central titles and two American League pennants. He retired after the 2013 season and has been a special assistant to the Tigers' front office ever since.

“I’d like to thank Chris Ilitch and the entire Tigers organization for deciding to retire No. 10 in my honor this summer,” Leyland said in the released statement. “Having the opportunity to manage in Detroit was one of the great privileges of my career and I still look back fondly on the memories that we shared with Tigers fans. This is a humbling moment for me and an honor that I will cherish forever.”

Leyland will be the second manager to have his number retired by the Tigers and displayed on the wall beyond the right field seats, joining Sparky Anderson. The other former Tigers so honored: Lou Whitaker, Charlie Gehringer, Alan Trammell, Hank Greenberg, Al Kaline, Willie Horton and Jack Morris. All but Whitaker and Horton are in the Hall of Fame.

The number retirement ceremony is scheduled to begin at 5:15 p.m., about 55 minutes before the first pitch. The first 15,000 fans in attendance that day will get a Jim Leyland Starter Pack.

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Detroit Tigers to retire Jim Leyland's number, Aug. 3 at Comerica Park