Since 1972, Major League Baseball annually has presented an award (originally known as The Commissioner's Award) which recognizes the player who best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual's contribution to his team.
In 1973, following the tragic death of Roberto Clemente, the award was re-named to honor the man whose spirit and goodwill always will be remembered. The award recognizes those individuals who truly understand the value of helping others.
A panel of baseball dignitaries, including Vera Clemente and Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig, annually selects a winner from a list of 30 nominees, one from each Major League Baseball club. This year, the MLB.com fan ballot winner will be tallied as one vote among those cast by the special selection panel. Past winners include Al Leiter, Tony Gwynn, Sammy Sosa, Willie Mays, Lou Brock, Ozzie Smith, Cal Ripken, Jr. and Kirby Puckett.
Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers was named the recipient of the 2012 Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet prior to Game Four of the World Series at Comerica Park in Detroit.
"Major League Baseball is proud to present our most prestigious off-field honor, the Roberto Clemente Award, to Clayton Kershaw," said Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig. "His accomplishments on the mound at such a young age are well known to baseball fans, but I am delighted that our game can shine a light on Clayton's extraordinary efforts with his wife Ellen to make a difference in the lives of children in Zambia. Clayton Kershaw is a leader through his inspiring example, and he is a wonderful representation of the enduring, philanthropic spirit of Roberto Clemente." Full Story » | Press Release »
From outfielder Willie Mays in 1971 to starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw in 2012, take a look back at the all-time winners of the Award.
Previous Winners List & Bios »
It has been many years since his untimely death and still today Clemente is remembered as one of the greatest athletes and humanitarians of all time.
Roberto Clemente Bio »