There is something very special about David Peralta’s love of the game. Whether it is his upbringing in Venezuela or his unique path to the big leagues, the absolute enthusiasm he brings to the ballpark every day makes him an irreplaceable leader on and off the field.
The Roberto Clemente Award is bestowed annually to the player who best represents the game of Baseball through extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions, both on and off the field.
Every year, each MLB Club nominates a player to be considered for the Award in tribute to Clemente's achievements and character. This year's list of nominees features players whose various community and philanthropic activities have focused on important issues ranging from awareness & fundraising to support those with cancer and other illnesses or special needs, education for young people, natural disaster relief, outreach to underserved children & communities in the United States and abroad, and more.
Read about all of the nominees below.
Born and raised in metro-Atlanta, Will Smith was excited to join his hometown team following the 2019 season. At the start of 2020, before ever pitching in a game for the Atlanta Braves, he immediately became involved in the Braves Country community, serving at the local animal shelter and helping with homeless pet adoptions.
By now, you have probably heard the story… Baltimore Orioles infielder Trey Mancini, a 27-year-old athlete coming off the best season of his career, is diagnosed with Stage III Colon Cancer during Spring Training of 2020.
Nate Eovaldi has been a fixture in the community since being traded to Boston in 2018. He has donated his time and money to support the Red Sox and the Red Sox Foundation, as well as the Jimmy Fund and the Greater Boston Food Bank.
The Chicago Cubs are honored to nominate outfielder Jason Heyward for the 2021 Roberto Clemente Award. While Jason’s on-field performance during his 10-year professional baseball career has resulted in numerous accolades including National League All-Star, World Series champion and five-time Gold Glove Award winner, Jason’s off-field commitment to social justice and efforts to address societal inequities are among his greatest achievements.
Since joining the White Sox organization in January, All-Star closer Liam Hendriks has shown immense and unwavering support to frontline workers, underserved community groups and individuals and businesses most heavily impacted by the ongoing public health crisis.
Since putting on a Reds uniform in 2007, Joey Votto has committed to and delivered when it comes to supporting the local community.
Cleveland Indians starter and 26-year-old Aaron Civale is a celebrity at the kids’ table each Thanksgiving in his East Windsor, Conn. home.
Ian Desmond is a veteran player who is leading by example. The younger players are watching, and they see what he is doing. Ian has always been honored to accept the responsibility that goes with being a role model, and during these unusual years of navigating life with the coronavirus, he feels that to an even greater degree.
Miguel Cabrera is widely considered one of the best hitters in the history of baseball. The 2012 Triple Crown Winner, 11x All-Star, 2x MVP and 7x Silver Slugger award winner is also one of the game’s most caring, selfless and giving individuals.
As the world continues to fight a global pandemic, two-time MLB All-Star Alex Bregman continues to be a true champion for Houston.
It’s ironic that playing a shark led Salvador “Salvy” Pérez—one of MLB’s most generous, kind and charismatic individuals—to dramatically increase his support of teachers and improve the lives of others.
President Barack Obama once referred to Mike Trout during a speech discussing the versatility of the farm bill and said, “It’s like Mike Trout, for those of you who know baseball. It’s somebody who’s got a lot of tools and multitasks.”
On the day he originally signed with the Dodgers in February 2014, Justin Turner’s name was not mentioned until the fifth paragraph of a news story covering the day’s transactions, noting that as a non-roster invitee to big league camp he provided “a little second baseman insurance.”
Miguel Elias Rojas Naidenoff, a native of Los Teques, Venezuela, takes the field each day with a deep love of the game that shines bright with his beaming spirit that brings a smile to everyone who comes around him.
As a Harvard graduate who studied environmental science, Brent Suter uses his platform to draw attention to various environmental issues, the effects of climate change, the global crisis of plastic waste and emphasizes positive change.
Though the record books will show Nelson Cruz’s time as a Minnesota Twin as a brief period in his illustrious career, the impact Nelson has had on Twins Territory is enormous.
In 2019, Pete Alonso took Major League Baseball by storm when he won the T-Mobile Home Run Derby. He went on to dominate that season by smashing the rookie record for home runs.
Growing up in Huntington Beach, Calif., Kyle Higashioka never had to worry about finding a space or way to play the game of baseball. He was able to readily utilize the resources available to him to catapult his love of the sport into what eventually became a Major League career.
The Roberto Clemente Award recognizes a Major League player who best represents the game of baseball through extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions both on and off the field. To us, there is no doubt that Tony Kemp is deserving of this recognition.
Alec Bohm’s heart for philanthropy developed early on through his close-knit family in Omaha, Neb. Along with the hard work he put in on the field, his family emphasized giving to others and lending a helping hand in the community whenever possible.
Jacob Stallings has helped keep the Pirates active in the community during a difficult year for everyone. Even with strict COVID-19 protocols in place, Jacob took time during his busy Spring Training schedule to create a memorable experience for a group of kids.
The Padres are proud to recognize Joe Musgrove as their 2021 Roberto Clemente Award nominee. While new to the Padres organization in 2021, Joe is no stranger to the community and fanbase; As a San Diego native, Joe has a special place in his heart for the Friar Faithful.
Giving back to the Bay Area comes naturally to Brandon Crawford, the Bay Area native who was raised in Pleasanton, Calif., and grew up a Giants fan attending games at both Candlestick Park and Oracle Park.
Kyle Seager is an All-Star and Gold Glove Award winner who has consistently produced on the field throughout his 11 seasons in Seattle. He is among the Seattle Mariners’ top-five all-time leaders in hits, doubles, home runs, RBI, runs, total bases and games.
Since joining the St. Louis Cardinals in 2018, Paul Goldschmidt has continued to prove that he is an athlete of extraordinary character, both on and off the field. His philanthropic efforts are numerous and far-reaching.
Ryan Yarbrough is an active contributor to his community with a relentless desire to improve his team and the lives of others. Throughout his career, Ryan has not waited to be asked to help; he has routinely stepped up when others are in need and consistently sought out ways to give back.
Jose Trevino has been very active with community endeavors during his time with the Rangers. This offseason, he served as the honorary chair of the annual Texas Rangers Toy Drive, raising funds for Christmas gifts for youngsters at the Texas Rangers Youth Academy and West Side Helping Hands in Corpus Christi.
At the young age of 23 years old, Bo Bichette has already made his mark as an All-Star player for the Toronto Blue Jays organization.
Max Scherzer on the field and Max Scherzer off the field are two very different people. A steely expression on the mound melts into an easy smile while talking with families during his fantasy football fundraiser.