ANAHEIM -- Michael Young is the Rangers' 2012 nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet. The prestigious honor goes to the Major League player who best represents the sport through contributions on and off the field, highlighting community involvement and sportsmanship. This is the fourth consecutive time Young has been nominated for the award bearing the name of the legendary Pirates Hall of Famer. Clemente, a 15-time All-Star and native of Puerto Rico, perished on New Year's Eve 1972 in a plane crash while attempting to fly relief goods into Nicaragua in the wake of a devastating earthquake. "I think that we owe it to the community to give back," said Young, who was born and raised in Southern California and has been a Rangers mainstay since 2001. "I am honored to be recognized as the Texas Rangers Roberto Clemente nominee and equally honored to be named as a finalist for the league-wide honor.
"We hope to make our involvement in the community grow even more in the future through the work of various community organizations we support and the Michael Young Family Foundation." Young's charitable giving includes a longtime partnership dating back to 2002 with Wipe Out Kids' Cancer (WOKC), a non-profit organization dedicating to eliminating children's cancer through innovative research, education and treatment. He has hosted a group of "WOKC Ambassadors" each year at a Rangers home game. In 2005, Young helped furnish the outpatient physical therapy room at Children's Medical Center, providing equipment for patient rehabilitation. A year later, he began the Young Heroes Scholarship Program, providing scholarships to young adults across the country who have battled cancer and are pursuing academic dreams. Ninety-five college scholarships have been awarded, each student receiving a laptop computer and printer. The Michael Young Family Hispanic Scholarship Program was established in 2010. Actively involved in numerous organizations, including the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation, Young and his wife, Cristina, launched in July 2011 the Michael Young Family Foundation. Its focus is on children's health in physical, social, mental and educational areas. Fans can vote for the Clemente Award on MLB.com, automatically registering for a chance to win a trip to the 2012 World Series. Young will be honored as the Rangers' Clemente Award nominee during a pregame ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 29, when the team plays the Angels. "It's important for the Texas Rangers to have players who consider their off- field accomplishments as important as their on-field accomplishments," said Rangers CEO and president Nolan Ryan. "Michael Young epitomizes that philosophy and leads by example for his teammates and others in the community." Fans can vote for their favorite at MLB.com/ClementeAward and register for chance to win a trip to the 2012 World Series. Voting ends at 10:59 p.m. CT on Oct. 14.