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Cano's work off the field earns Clemente nomination

MLB.com @gregjohnsmlb

SEATTLE -- Robinson Cano is not only having an MVP-caliber season on the field, the All-Star second baseman is shining in the community as well, as Major League Baseball announced Tuesday that Cano is the Mariners' 2016 nominee for the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award.

The Clemente Award is the annual recognition of a player from each MLB club who best represents the game of baseball through extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions, both on and off the field.

SEATTLE -- Robinson Cano is not only having an MVP-caliber season on the field, the All-Star second baseman is shining in the community as well, as Major League Baseball announced Tuesday that Cano is the Mariners' 2016 nominee for the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award.

The Clemente Award is the annual recognition of a player from each MLB club who best represents the game of baseball through extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions, both on and off the field.

Beginning on Roberto Clemente Day on Wednesday, fans are encouraged to participate in the new process of selecting the winner of the Roberto Clemente Award by posting any nominee's voting hashtags to MLB's official social media accounts, @MLB on Twitter and Facebook.com/MLB. Cano's hashtag is #VoteCano.

Cano has made a significant impact on the lives of underserved children and communities both locally and globally. In 2011, he established the RC22 Foundation to focus his efforts on youth development and community healthcare.

Last June, Robinson hosted his inaugural Seattle fundraiser, Canoche, to benefit the RC22 Foundation. The event, held at The Paramount Theater, raised $1.1 million to support the RC22 Dream School in the Dominican Republic and Seattle-area charities.

In addition to supporting such local charities as Seattle Children's Hospital, Odessa Brown Clinic, City Year Seattle and the Boys & Girls Clubs of King County, Cano's foundation has opened a Montessori school that provides high quality early childhood education to 101 students from an impoverished community of San Pedro de Macoris, his hometown in the Dominican Republic.

The Foundation has also provided holiday gifts, bicycles and athletic equipment to thousands of children in his home country, including the donation of more than 2,500 uniforms and baseball cleats to high-need youth baseball leagues.

Major League Baseball announced the 30 club nominees on Tuesday. Each club nominates one player to be considered for the Roberto Clemente Award in tribute to Clemente's achievements and character by recognizing current players who truly understand the value of helping others.

Wednesday marks the 15th annual Roberto Clemente Day, which was established by MLB to honor Clemente's legacy and to officially acknowledge local club nominees of the Roberto Clemente Award. Clubs playing at home on Wednesday will recognize their local nominee as part of Roberto Clemente Day ceremonies. Visiting clubs will honor their nominee before another September home game.

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.

The original "Commissioner's Award" for philanthropic service was renamed in 1973 in honor of Clemente, 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.

Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast.

 

Seattle Mariners, Robinson Cano