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Desmond nominated for the prestigious award for the third consecutive season

September 12, 2019

Major League Baseball today announced that Ian Desmond was named the Colorado Rockies’ 2019 nominee for the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award, the most prestigious individual award for Major League players. The Roberto Clemente Award is the annual recognition of a Major League player who best represents the game of Baseball

Major League Baseball today announced that Ian Desmond was named the Colorado Rockies’ 2019 nominee for the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award, the most prestigious individual award for Major League players.

The Roberto Clemente Award is the annual recognition of 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.

Each Club nominates one current player to be considered for the Roberto Clemente Award in tribute to Clemente’s achievements and character. Wednesday, September 6th marks the sixteenth annual Roberto Clemente Day, which was established by Major League Baseball to honor Clemente’s legacy and to officially acknowledge local Club nominees of the Roberto Clemente Award. As part of the league-wide celebration, the Roberto Clemente Day logo will appear on the bases and official dugout lineup cards and a special tribute video will be played in ballparks.

Every year, each MLB Club nominates a player to be considered for the Award in tribute to Clemente’s achievements and character. Wednesday, September 18 marks the 18th annual Roberto Clemente Day, which was established by Major League Baseball to honor Clemente’s legacy and to officially acknowledge local Club nominees of the Roberto Clemente Award. As part of the league-wide celebration, the Roberto Clemente Day logo will appear on the bases and official dugout lineup cards and a special tribute video will be played in ballparks.

Desmond’s leadership, talent, character and humble manner has led him to be the Rockies’ Roberto Clemente Award nominee for three consecutive years. He has pursued philanthropic endeavors his entire Major League career and is an actively involved in nearly every Rockies community effort throughout the season.

Since 2012, Desmond has been an integral part of the End NF community, raising awareness and funds to combat neurofibromatosis, a genetic disorder that causes tumors to grow along various types of nerves, and possibly affecting the development of non-nervous tissues such as bones and skin. Ian and his family regularly provide tickets and hose NF families battling NF for Coors Field games, but this year, Ian expanded his NF outreach by taking his campaign to end neurofibromatosis to Major League ballparks across the country. With help from the Children’s Tumor Foundation, Desmond has hosted End NF “meet-up” outings at nearly every ballpark the Rockies have visited this season. So far this season, Desmond and the Children’s Tumor Foundation had met over 1,000 members of the NF community had ballparks around the country, with each of the tickets sold to those games including a donation to the Children’s Tumor Foundation.

For the third consecutive year, Desmond also pledged to donate 1,000 for every RBI and run scored during NF Awareness Month in May. Additionally, this year they matched funds donated by fans online during that time period. The Desmonds were excited to present a check for $34,600 to the Children’s Tumor Foundation via the Colorado Rockies Baseball Club Foundation.

“Ian demonstrates daily the importance of giving back to the community. He is always thinking of new and creative ways to share his life experience with others, and he is a great example to younger players in the game. I believe Mr. Clemente would be proud of the husband, father and baseball player that Ian Desmond has become in his career,” said Colorado Rockies Vice President of Community & Retail Operations Jim Kellogg.

“Being nominated for this award is a tremendous honor. Roberto Clemente continues to be an inspiration to all professional baseball players, and his legacy pushes us to be positive contributors to the communities around us and those people within them who are in need. That’s really what it’s all about,” said Desmond.

The league-wide winner of the Roberto Clemente Award will be selected via a blue ribbon panel, including Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred, Jr., representatives from MLB-affiliated networks (MLB Network, FOX Sports, ESPN and TBS) and MLB.com, as well as Vera Clemente (the late Roberto’s wife & MLB Goodwill Ambassador). Beginning today, fans can vote for the overall winner of the Roberto Clemente Award via a dedicated website. The site will feature bios of each of the nominees and will allow fans to vote until the end of the season on Sunday, September 29th. The winner of the fan vote will count as one vote among those cast by the blue ribbon panel. Fans are encouraged to vote by visiting the following link: mlb.com/clemente21.

The concept of honoring Major League players for their philanthropic work was created in 1971 as the “Commissioner’s Award.” The recognition was renamed to the “Roberto Clemente Award” in 1973 in honor of the Hall of Famer and 15-time All-Star who died in a plane crash on New Year’s Eve 1972 while attempting to deliver supplies to earthquake victims in Nicaragua.

The distinguished list of past Roberto Clemente Award winners includes 18 members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame:

1971

Willie Mays+**

1981

Steve Garvey

1991

Harold Reynolds

2001

Curt Schilling

2011

David Ortiz

1972

Brooks Robinson+**

1982

Ken Singleton

1992

Cal Ripken, Jr.+

2002

Jim Thome+

2012

Clayton Kershaw

1973

Al Kaline+

1983

Cecil Cooper

1993

Barry Larkin+

2003

Jamie Moyer

2013

Carlos Beltrán

1974

Willie Stargell+

1984

Ron Guidry

1994

Dave Winfield+

2004

Edgar Martinez+

2014

Paul Konerko *

1975

Lou Brock+

1985

Don Baylor

1995

Ozzie Smith+

2005

John Smoltz+

2014

Jimmy Rollins *

1976

Pete Rose

1986

Garry Maddox

1996

Kirby Puckett+

2006

Carlos Delgado

2015

Andrew McCutchen

1977

Rod Carew+

1987

Rick Sutcliffe

1997

Eric Davis

2007

Craig Biggio+

2016

Curtis Granderson

1978

Greg Luzinski

1988

Dale Murphy

1998

Sammy Sosa

2008

Albert Pujols

2017

Anthony Rizzo

1979

Andre Thornton

1989

Gary Carter+

1999

Tony Gwynn+

2009

Derek Jeter

2018

Yadier Molina

1980

Phil Niekro+

1990

Dave Stewart

2000

Al Leiter

2010

Tim Wakefield

+ Member of The National Baseball Hall of Fame; * Co-winner; ** Originally known as the Commissioner’s Award (prior to 1973)