Justin Verlander nominated for the 2014 Roberto Clemente Award

Major League Baseball and Chevrolet, the official vehicle of MLB, today announced that Justin Verlander was named the Detroit Tigers 2014 nominee for the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet. Swisher is one of the 30 Club finalists for the annual Award, which recognizes a Major League Baseball player who best represents the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field, including sportsmanship and community involvement.

Each Club nominates one player to be considered for the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet in an effort to pay tribute to Clemente's achievements and character by recognizing current players who truly understand the value of helping others. Wednesday, September 17th marks the thirteenth annual Roberto Clemente Day, which was established by Major League Baseball to honor Clemente's legacy and to officially recognize local Club nominees of the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet and to honor Clemente's legacy. The 15-time MLB All-Star and Hall of Famer died in a plane crash on New Year's Eve 1972 while attempting to deliver supplies to earthquake victims in Nicaragua. 

Justin Verlander is widely considered one of the best pitchers in baseball. The six-time All-Star and former American League Most Valuable Player and Cy Young Award winner is also one of the game's most caring and giving individuals. Throughout his career, Verlander's focus off the playing field has been giving back to those who serve in the United States Armed Forces.

In 2011, Verlander partnered with the Detroit Tigers Foundation to create a program called Victory for Veterans. Through this program, veterans wounded in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom or in Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom are selected by Veterans Affairs Medical Centers in Michigan to be hosted in Verlander's personal luxury suite at Comerica Park when he pitches for the Tigers. Verlander has also helped renovate a waiting room and rehabilitation facility at the VA Hospitals in Detroit and Ann Arbor.

In August 2013, Verlander announced a commitment of $1 million to launch Wins for Warriors, a program designed to provide mental health support for veterans and their families with a focus on the Detroit and Richmond/Norfolk communities. During its first grant cycle, Wins for Warriors awarded $267,000 in grant funding to two best-in-class organizations: Give an Hour and The Mission Continues.

The distinguished list of past national Roberto Clemente Award recipients includes 14 members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame:

1971

Willie Mays+**

1982

Ken Singleton

1993

Barry Larkin+

2004

Edgar Martinez

1972

Brooks Robinson+**

1983

Cecil Cooper 

1994

Dave Winfield+

2005

John Smoltz

1973

Al Kaline+

1984

Ron Guidry

1995

Ozzie Smith+

2006

Carlos Delgado

1974

Willie Stargell+

1985

Don Baylor

1996

Kirby Puckett+

2007

Craig Biggio

1975

Lou Brock+

1986

Garry Maddox

1997

Eric Davis

2008

Albert Pujols

1976

Pete Rose

1987

Rick Sutcliffe

1998

Sammy Sosa

2009

Derek Jeter

1977

Rod Carew+

1988

Dale Murphy

1999

Tony Gwynn+

2010

Tim Wakefield

1978

Greg Luzinski

1989

Gary Carter+

2000

Al Leiter

2011

David Ortiz

1979

Andre Thornton

1990

Dave Stewart

2001

Curt Schilling

2012

Clayton Kershaw

1980

Phil Niekro+

1991

Harold Reynolds

2002

Jim Thome

2013

Carlos Beltran

1981

Steve Garvey

1992

Cal Ripken, Jr.+

2003

Jamie Moyer

   

+ Member of the Baseball Hall of Fame

** Originally known as the Commissioner's Award (prior to 1973)

Fans are encouraged to participate in the process of selecting the national Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet recipient by visiting ChevyBaseball.com, which is powered by MLB Advanced Media, to vote for one of the 30 Club nominees. Voting ends on Sunday, October 6th and participating fans will be automatically registered for a chance to win a trip to the 2014 World Series, where the national winner of the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet will be announced.

The winner of the fan vote will receive one vote among those cast by the selection panel of dignitaries, which includes Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig; MLB Chief Operating Officer Rob Manfred; MLB Goodwill Ambassador and wife of Roberto Clemente, Vera Clemente; and representatives from Chevrolet, MLB Network, MLB.com, ESPN, FOX Sports and TBS, among others. 

Clubs playing at home on September 17th will recognize their local nominees as part of Roberto Clemente Day ceremonies, while visiting Clubs will honor their nominees before another September home game. As part of the league-wide celebration, the Roberto Clemente Day logo will appear on the bases and the official dugout lineup cards.