Baltimore Orioles right-hander Kevin Gausman announced Thursday he plans to switch his jersey number to 34 next season to honor Roy Halladay, the two-time Cy Young award winner - and Gausman's childhood "idol" - who died last month in a plane crash.

"Being a kid in love with the game of baseball, many of my afternoons and fondest childhood memories are of watching the game with my dad. Naturally I became a huge fan of fellow Colorado native Roy Halladay," Gausman wrote on Twitter. "He instantly became my idol. For years I watched him dominate his competition. To me, Roy gave me the inspiration that I could fulfill even my biggest of dreams - being a pitcher just like him.

"The older I got the more I began to understand the challenges of being a baseball player in Colorado. There have been less than 100 Major League Baseball players that were born there. I'd like to think we have our own fraternity amongst ourselves."

When he first broke into the big leagues with the Orioles in 2013, Gausman - who was born in Centennial, Colo., roughly 15 miles south of Denver, Halladay's hometown - was given No. 37. The following year, he switched to 39, the number he's worn for the last four seasons. Now, to honor Halladay "both on an off the field," Gausman will change it once more.

"The loss of Roy was tragic and is saddening, but I feel honored to have watched everything he achieved. I plan to wear #34 next season to honor Roy Halladay both on and off the field."

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