Doolittle is Nats nominee for Roberto Clemente Award originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington
Nationals reliever Sean Doolittle has been selected as Washington’s nominee for the 2020 Roberto Clemente award, an honor given to the player who most demonstrates the humanitarian values shown by baseball hall-of-famer Roberto Clemente.
Doolittle is among 30 nominees announced by Major League Baseball on Thursday, a list that also includes Orioles second baseman Hanser Alberto. Dolittle played a key role in the first World Series title in Nats franchise history last season, but it's his actions and personality off of the field that have him up for this prestigious award.
“Describing Sean Doolittle is not simple,” MLB.com wrote on its online ballot. “He does not fit neatly into the expected professional athlete ‘box.’ He is many things – thoughtful, well-read, generous, advocative, diverse, humble, studious, articulate, respectful, accountable, personable, compassionate, determined, tolerant, selfless … on and on the list could go.”
“A man of varied interests (voracious reader, Star Wars aficionado, heavy metal music enthusiast, dog lover), Sean is an everyman that relates to everyone.”
Doolittle has struggled at times this season, but recently came off of the injured list and has impressed since returning to the mound.
Originally called the Commissioner’s Trophy and first awarded to Willie Mays in 1971, the Roberto Clemente award has been given to numerous hall-of-fame players over the years. It is a key part of the league’s effort to continually honor the late Pirates star, something the franchise is going the extra mile on later this month.
On Sept. 9 against the White Sox, all Pittsburgh players will wear the No. 21 on the backs of their jerseys, the first time anyone besides Clemente has worn the number since he died in a tragic plane crash in 1972.
Fans will have a chance to bid online for those jerseys, with proceeds going to benefit the Clemente Foundation and Pirates Charities.