Nelson Cruz named Twins nominated for 2021 Roberto Clemente Award
The award is the annual recognition of a major league player who best represents the game of baseball through his extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions, both on and off the field.
Wednesday, September 15 marks the 20th annual Roberto Clemente Day, which was established by the MLB to honor Clemente’s legacy as a humanitarian. As part of the league-wide celebration, the logo of the day will appear on official dugout bases and roster cards, a special tribute video will be shown in stadiums, and all players and staff on the field will wear a “21” patch on their uniform sleeves.
Cruz led the Twins to back-to-back American League Central Division titles; was twice elected MVP of the team; won two consecutive Silver Slugger Awards for his position; hit 76 home runs and scored 191 RBIs in 258 games; and was named to this year’s All-Star Team.
Cruz’s efforts off the pitch have also focused on empowering people in socially vulnerable situations and using sport and education to help children reach their potential to become leaders and improve their performance. quality of life. Some of these actions include:
- Provide food and financial support to nearly 1,200 families in Las Matas De Santa Cruz, Dominican Republic, during the COVID-19 pandemic, providing them with the necessary resources to comply with stay-at-home orders.
- Lead the delivery of a $ 400,000 donation from Major League Baseball, Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) and the MLBPA Players Trust Returning Home program in the Dominican Republic, which provided medical supplies and helped fight food insecurity as a result of the COVID -19 crisis.
- Helping her hometown of Las Matas De Santa Cruz by donating a fire truck and ambulance to treat and transport people to the nearest hospital, an hour’s drive away. He also built a new police station and donated a motorbike to the town’s policemen, who previously had to walk.
- Bringing dentists, optometrists and other volunteer doctors, as well as donated equipment and medicine, to his hometown clinic every year, providing exams, medicine and glasses.
- Purchase of wheelchairs, crutches, walkers and canes for the elderly and disabled in his hometown.
- Lead his Boomstick23 foundation in the creation of a new educational and technical center to help the young people of Las Matas De Santa Cruz to improve their employability by completing their high school studies online, learning different trades such as carpentry / electricity, and how to better use agricultural land to produce crops.
- Support for the Healing Venezuela initiative, which helps 2,000 Venezuelan newborns each year receive vital nutrition in their first year (a 400% increase since Cruz’s involvement).
- Fundraising through the Big League Impact ALL WIN campaign in 2019, impacting the education center in the province of Monte Cristi, Dominican Republic.
- Engage with youth in the Twin Cities area, including organizing a vitilla clinic with Twins RBI All-Stars in 2019.
“It’s hard to describe the monumental impact Nelson Cruz had – and still has – on the Minnesota Twins organization,” said club president and CEO Dave St. Peter. “His leadership, professionalism and elite play have made us better on the pitch, while his work in the community has improved the lives of countless people. We are in awe of all that Nellie accomplished during her time in Minnesota, and truly grateful for her efforts. Nelson Cruz will always have a special place in Twins Territory. “