Rangers infielder Michael Young is once again up for the distinguished Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet. For the second straight year, Young is the Rangers' nominee for the Clemente Award, which will be given at the World Series to the player who best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual's contribution to his team. "It means a lot to me," Young said. "I've always said community recognition means family recognition because my wife, Cristina, works extremely hard at it. Now that Dallas is our home, we're trying to do more things in the community every year and it's something we hope to continue to do."
Young continues to be deeply involved with Wipe Out Kids' Cancer, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to eradicate pediatric cancer through research, education and treatment while providing hope to children affected by cancer. Michael and Cristina annually sponsor the Wipe Out Kids' Cancer Ambassador Program, allowing young cancer patients the opportunity to attend Rangers games. They created the Young Heroes Scholarship Program in 2006 and to date has awarded over 50 cancer survivors with scholarships, laptop computers and printers. He has been involved in Make-A-Wish, MLB's Dallas Reviving Baseball in Inner cities program, Trinity River Mission, Charles and Cheri Ortega Children's Fund, Christ's Have for Children and the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation. "Our work with Wipeout Kids' Cancer is still at the top of the list," Young said. "I'd like to increase my involvement in RBI but Wipe Out Kids Cancer is very special, we take a lot of pride out of it and get a lot of enjoyment out of it." The Rangers will honor Young on Friday before their game with the Yankees. Each team has one nominee and the winner will be named at the World Series. "It goes without saying that this award is special because of who it is named after," Young said. "He was one of the greatest persons to ever wear the uniform. He was a great player and a great humanitarian. To be associated with somebody like that is a great honor." All 30 nominees have immersed themselves in the type of humanitarian and community efforts that distinguished the life of Clemente, a life that ended at age 38 on New Year's Eve 1972, with the crash of a plane aboard which he was personally delivering aid to Nicaraguan earthquake victims. Fans will once again have the opportunity to participate in the selection of the national winner. They can cast votes for any of the 30 club nominees through Oct. 8. The fan-ballot winner will be tallied as one vote among those cast by a special selection panel of baseball dignitaries and media members. The panel includes Commissioner Bud Selig and Vera Clemente, widow of the Hall of Fame right fielder. Voting fans also will be automatically registered for a chance to win a trip for four to the 2010 World Series to see the national winner presented with the Roberto Clemente Award.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.