MINNEAPOLIS-ST. PAUL, MN – Major League Baseball today announced that Kyle Gibson was named the Minnesota Twins 2019 nominee for the 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.
Kyle Gibson is one of the 30 Club nominees for the annual award. Since his Major League debut in 2013, the right-handed pitcher has helped drive the Minnesota Twins organization’s success on the field and in the community, while using his platform as a Major League Baseball player to effect change in the world. Kyle and his wife, Elizabeth, have engaged with the One Child Matters organization to provide food, education, medical aid and support for a young girl in the Dominican Republic; additionally, Gibson has worked with the Bright Hope Ministries and Help One Now organizations to develop a high school in Haiti and continue to raise money for its operation costs; has raised more than $20,000 for the Twins Community Fund; has provided more than 1,200 Twins tickets to Christian and urban youth groups; and, by hosting events for the Boys and Girls Club, has raised more than $160,000 for the organization. Since 2015, Gibson has been involved with Big League Impact and is now vice-president of the nonprofit organization that works with players to advance community efforts in local communities and around the globe. In recognition of his dedication to paying it forward, in 2017 the Twins Community Fund honored Kyle with the Carl R. Pohlad Award, which recognizes outstanding community service by a current Minnesota Twins player.
“From his first years in our organization, Kyle’s commitment to community service has been an inspiration – a passion for effecting change has only grown in size and scope,” said Twins President & CEO Dave St. Peter. “The work that Kyle, his wife Elizabeth, and the Gibson family engages in to better lives throughout Twins Territory and abroad deserves celebration and our thanks.”
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.