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    UIC Baseball to Retire Curtis Granderson's #28 Jersey
     

     
    Curtis Granderson at-bat for the New York Yankees.
     
    Curtis Granderson at-bat for the New York Yankees.
     
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    Jan. 7, 2013

    Diamond Dinner Brochure Get Acrobat Reader

    CHICAGO – The UIC Baseball program announced that it will retire Curtis Granderson’s #28 jersey on Feb. 6 at the first annual Diamond Dinner.  The event will be held on campus at Student Center East and all interested parties should contact Katie Kozak at (312) 996-5874 or kkozack@uic.edu for ticket information.  For more general information, please view the above PDF document.

    “Curtis is a great representative of our baseball program and I’m really happy that we are recognizing him,” said head baseball coach Mike Dee.  “Retiring someone’s jersey is really significant and no one more deserves that than Curtis.”

    Granderson spent three years with the Flames from 2000-2002 and achieved All-American status in his final season.  In 2002, Granderson set single-season program records with a .483 batting average, 100 hits and 76 runs scored. 

    He was selected by the Detroit Tigers in the third round (80th overall) of the 2002 MLB draft and stayed with the organization until 2009 when he was traded to the New York Yankees.

    Granderson just completed his third season with New York and has accomplished many milestones along the way.  In 2011, he earned the American League Silver Slugger Award, which is given to the best player at each position, and finished fourth in the MVP voting.  This past season Granderson belted a career-high 43 home runs and became just the fifth Yankee all-time to hit 40 bombs in back-to-back seasons as he posted 41 in 2011.

    Perhaps his most cherished accolades are his UIC business management and marketing degrees which he finished while playing minor league baseball.  Granderson is a dedicated advocate for education through the work he does with his charity called the Grand Kids Foundation.  The foundation is focused on improving the educational experience for youth nationwide as well as helping to re-establish baseball opportunities for inner city youths.

    “Curtis is a special human being that just happens to play baseball,” said Dee.  “What continues to impress me is his selflessness, humility and his sincere commitment to help educate young people.  It’s the things he does off the field that makes him Curtis Granderson.”

    Granderson will become just the second person in program history to have his jersey retired alongside Brian Fitzpatrick.  Fitzpatrick's #19 jersey was enshrined in 1996 after he was involved in a fatal car accident on Christmas Eve of 1995.  The pitcher had appeared in 14 games as a freshman and was slated to enter the starting rotation during his sophomore campaign.