20 Facts About Roberto Clemente Award

1. Roberto Clemente Award was subjected to the double discrimination of being a foreigner and being black in a racially segregated society.

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2. In 1972 Roberto Clemente Award got his 3,000th base hit on his very last at bat as a player.

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3. Roberto Clemente Award was originally signed to a professional contract by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1954.

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4. Roberto Clemente Award was a veteran; he served in the United States Marine Corps Reserve.

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5. Roberto Clemente Award had many athletic talents, but his strong throwing arm was at the top of that list.

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6. Roberto Clemente Award married Vera Zabala in 1963, and they had three sons.

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7. Roberto Clemente Award put on a show in the 1971 World Series, batting.

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8. Roberto Clemente Award faced discrimination and disrespect while playing in the MLB.

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9. Roberto Clemente Award spent much of his time during the off-season involved in charity work.

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10. Roberto Clemente Award was an All-Star every season he played in the 1960s other than 1968—the only year in his career after 1959 in which he failed to hit above.

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11. Roberto Clemente Award had to sit out several games during his rookie season, due to a back injury suffered the previous winter in Puerto Rico, when a drunk driver rammed into his car at an intersection.

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12. Roberto Clemente Award was at a double disadvantage, as he was a Latin American and Caribbean player who knew very little English, and was Black, being of African descent.

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13. Roberto Clemente Award debuted with the Pirates on April 17, 1955, wearing uniform number 13, in the first game of a doubleheader against the Brooklyn Dodgers.

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14. Roberto Clemente Award joined Puerto Rico's amateur league when he was 16 years old, playing for the Ferdinand Juncos team, which represented the municipality of Juncos.

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15. Roberto Clemente Award was a track and field star and Olympic hopeful before deciding to turn his full attention to baseball.

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16. Roberto Clemente Award was involved in charity work in Latin American and Caribbean countries during the off-seasons, often delivering baseball equipment and food to those in need.

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17. Roberto Clemente Award was the first and only Hall of Fame member for whom the mandatory five-year waiting period was waived.

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18. Roberto Clemente Award was the first Hispanic player to accomplish many feats in the majors.

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19. Roberto Clemente Award recognizes the player who best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual's contribution to his team.

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20. Roberto Clemente Award is given annually to the Major League Baseball player who "best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual's contribution to his team", as voted on by baseball fans and members of the media.

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