OAKLAND -- Ace pitcher Jered Weaver was named the Angels' nominee for the 2013 Roberto Clemente Award, the humanitarian honor that's annually handed out by Major League Baseball and pays tribute to the Hall of Fame outfielder's philanthropic efforts.
The award recognizes a player who "best represents the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field, including sportsmanship and community involvement."
Weaver's charitable endeavors have long centered around the Special Olympics, which he's been a supporter of since his college days at Long Beach State University. The 30-year-old right-hander is a Sports Ambassador for the Special Olympics Southern California and annually attends their "Winter Games" with his wife, Kristin.
On July 5, the couple took their philanthropic efforts to another level by naming their first-born son Aden.
The name was a tribute to an 11-year-old boy -- named Aidan -- who visited Angel Stadium through the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The spelling of it was in honor of Nick Adenhart, the former Angels pitcher who was killed in a car crash in April 2009, hours after pitching at Angel Stadium.
"I know it means a lot to us to be able to keep Nick's memory alive," said Weaver, who was very much a mentor to Adenhart. "We're always thinking about him. I think it was the thing we wanted to do to support him and his family and make sure his legacy lives on."
MLB announced all 30 Clemente Award nominees, one per club, on Monday.
Voting runs from Tuesday through Oct. 6 at chevybaseball.com as fans help decide which of those 30 club winners will receive this prestigious recognition.
The winner of the fan vote will receive one vote among those cast by the selection panel of dignitaries, which includes MLB Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig; Clemente's wife, Vera Clemente, who also serves as MLB Goodwill Ambassador; Hall of Fame broadcaster and Spanish broadcaster for the Dodgers Jaime Jarrin; MLB Network analysts and former Clemente Award winners Al Leiter and Harold Reynolds; TBS analysts Dennis Eckersley and Buck Martinez; ESPN analysts and former Clemente Award winners Barry Larkin and Rick Sutcliffe; MLB.com senior correspondent Hal Bodley; and Mike Weidman, national promotions manager with Chevrolet.
Clemente -- a 15-time All-Star, 12-time Gold Glove Award winner and one-time MVP during a standout 18-year career with the Pirates -- died in a plane crash on New Year's Eve 1972, while attempting to deliver supplies to earthquake victims in Nicaragua.
The award, presented by Chevrolet, has been handed out since 1971 and was known as the Commissioner's Award until '73. The Angels have never had a winner, though Albert Pujols won it while with the Cardinals in 2008.
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez.