Heaney gets nomination for Clemente award

September 5th, 2018
Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Andrew Heaney reacts after getting Kansas City Royals' Mike Moustakas to ground out for the final out of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Tuesday, June 5, 2018. Heaney threw a one-hitter as the Angels won 1-0. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)Alex Gallardo/AP

ARLINGTON -- Left-hander was named the Angels' nominee for the 2018 Roberto Clemente Award, the annual recognition of a player who best represents the game through extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions on and off the field.

Heaney, who started Tuesday against the Rangers, is actively involved in several charitable endeavors. Since 2014, he has taken part in an annual mission trip to Honduras to help build a learning center for impoverished children and improve accessibility to education in rural areas. Heaney also regularly takes part in the Angels' visits to the Children's Hospital of Orange County and organized the Pup Cup, a 5K race, in July to raise funds for CHOC's therapy-dog program.

"Obviously, it's an extreme honor," Heaney said. "The Angels do a great job of putting us in a position to have an impact on the community. They allow us to do a lot of things, they present a lot of opportunities and help us out with our endeavors. We have a lot of guys on this team that do a lot in the community and are extremely good people on and off the field. Just to be nominated within this team, within this unit, is humbling for me."

"That's a great honor," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "I think those of us that grew up watching what Roberto Clemente was about and especially the way he passed, it's an inspiration. We don't have a better representative on our team than Andrew Heaney. I don't know if you know all the things that he does, but he's spending time in the offseason going down [to Honduras] and building houses. It's inspiring."

The league-wide winner of the Clemente Award will be selected by a blue-ribbon panel that includes Commissioner Rob Manfred, Clemente's late wife and current MLB goodwill ambassador, Vera Clemente, as well as representatives from MLB-affiliated networks and MLB.com. Fans can also vote for the winner at mlb.com/clemente21, with the winner of that tally counting as one vote among those cast by the blue-ribbon panel. The overall winner of the 2018 Roberto Clemente Award will be announced during the World Series.

Here is a list of previous winners of the esteemed honor. 

Ohtani returns

returned to the Angels' lineup on Tuesday, batting second and serving as the designated hitter against Rangers left-hander Mike Minor. Ohtani had not hit since Friday while recovering from his pitching appearance against the Astros on Sunday.

Ohtani, a left-handed bat, has received more opportunities to start against lefties now that is out with season-ending knee surgery. He is batting only .177 with a .524 OPS and no home runs against left-handed pitchers, compared with .311 with a 1.028 OPS and 15 home runs against righties.

"We have confidence with Shohei," Scioscia said. "The only way you're really going to hit lefties is you've got to go out there and experience it. You can practice all you want. You've got to go experience it. Now I think there's opportunity for him to get some more at-bats against left-handed pitching with Albert being out. We'll see when he's available if he can swing it and maybe get a little bit of experience to understand what lefties in our league are doing."

Ohtani is scheduled to throw a light bullpen session on Wednesday and a more intense one on Friday before the Angels clear him to make his next pitching appearance against the White Sox on Sunday. Ohtani experienced a drop in velocity in his last start against the Astros, but he said the issue was unrelated to the sprained elbow ligament that kept him off the mound for three months.

Second round of callups

Outfielders and and catcher comprised the second round of September callups for the Angels on Tuesday. Blash and Hermosillo started in left field and right field, respectively, as remains out with a concussion and received a normal day off.

It marked the first big league callup for Hudson, who the Angels acquired from the Reds in exchange for cash considerations in June. Hudson, 27, ended the Minor League season batting .293 with an .806 OPS with four home runs and 22 RBIs over 49 games. He is the third rookie catcher on the Angels' roster, joining and .

"It still hasn't hit me yet, to be honest," said Hudson, a sixth-round Draft pick of the Reds in 2012. "I'm sure it will once I put the jersey on and hear the national anthem. It's been a long road, for sure. I think I'm going on year six in the Minor Leagues. It's nothing compared to Frankie, but it's still a long, winding road."

To clear a spot for Hudson on the 40-man roster, the Angels released infielder .