Dodgers' Kershaw Nominated for Clemente Award

Major League Baseball and Chevrolet announced that Clayton Kershaw was named the Dodgers' 2011 nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award. Kershaw 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.

  . Today marks the 10th 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.

  The Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet pays tribute to Clemente's achievements and character by recognizing current players who truly understand the value of helping others. It is named for the 12-time All-Star and Hall of Famer who died in a plane crash on New Year's Eve 1972 while attempting to deliver supplies to earthquake victims in Nicaragua.  

Kershaw's charitable work has been focused on an organization called Arise Africa, which raises money to help build orphanages in Zambia. Clayton made a special visit to that African nation this past offseason with his wife, Ellen, who has made six trips to the impoverished country. Upon his return, Kershaw came up with the idea to donate $100 per strikeout to the organization in the hopes of building another orphanage for the kids. To date, the Texas native leads the National League with 231 strikeouts and "Kershaw's Challenge" (www.kershawchallenge.com) has raised $47,530 to the charity.  

In addition to his efforts abroad, Kershaw is also a strong supporter of the Dodgers Dream Foundation and this year he attended the annual bowling tournament hosted by his teammate, James Loney, spoke to the Dodgers Dream Foundation Youth Baseball Camp and took part in a photo shoot for our the Heart Gallery Calendar which helps finds homes for Foster Children. He also attended a video game party at Dodger Stadium for a group of children with the Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI) program.  

In addition, Kershaw acted to help families in need of disaster relief following the tsunami in Japan, the tornado in Alabama and the tornado that devastated Joplin, Mo. Following each of these natural disasters, Kershaw and several of his teammates signed autographs to raise money for people in need of shelter, supplies or medical care.     

On the field, Kershaw has been exemplary as well, fortifying his case for the 2011 Cy Young Award each time out. In addition to leading the National League in strikeouts, the left-hander currently leads the Major Leagues in ERA (2.36) and ranks second in the NL in wins (18) and opponents' batting average (.210). In his last trip to the mound, Kershaw became the first Dodger hurler since 2000 to win 18 games in a season and will still have three more starts in his quest for 20 victories this year, beginning tomorrow night.  

The distinguished list of national Roberto Clemente Award recipients includes 13 members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame:  

1971  Willie Mays*	1985  Don Baylor	1999  Tony Gwynn*
1972  Brooks Robinson*  1986  Garry Maddox	2000  Al Leiter
1973  Al Kaline*        1987  Rick Sutcliffe	2001  Curt Schilling
1974  Willie Stargell*  1988  Dale Murphy   	2002  Jim Thome
1975  Lou Brock*        1989  Gary Carter*   	2003  Jamie Moyer
1976  Pete Rose       	1990  Dave Stewart   	2004  Edgar Martinez
1977  Rod Carew*      	1991  Harold Reynolds  	2005  John Smoltz
1978  Greg Luzinski   	1992  Cal Ripken, Jr.*  2006  Carlos Delgado
1979  Andre Thornton   	1993  Barry Larkin      2007  Craig Biggio
1980  Phil Niekro*  	1994  Dave Winfield*   	2008  Albert Pujols
1981  Steve Garvey 	1995  Ozzie Smith*     	2009  Derek Jeter
1982  Ken Singleton    	1996  Kirby Puckett*    2010  Tim Wakefield
1983  Cecil Cooper     	1997  Eric Davis
1984  Ron Guidry      	1998  Sammy Sosa               
   * Member of Baseball Hall of Fame
  Beginning tomorrow, fans are encouraged to participate in the process of selecting the national award recipient by visiting www.chevybaseball.com/clemente, a site powered by MLB.com and created specifically for the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet platform, to vote for one of the 30 Club nominees. Voting ends on Oct. 9 and participating fans will be automatically registered for a chance to win a trip to the 2011 World Series, where the national winner of the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet will be announced.  

The winner of the fan poll will receive one vote among those cast by the selection panel, which includes Commissioner Selig; Vera Clemente, MLB Goodwill Ambassador and wife of the late Hall of Famer; Baseball Hall of Famer, TBS analyst and former Roberto Clemente Award winner Cal Ripken, Jr.; MLB Network analyst, TBS broadcaster and former Roberto Clemente Award winner John Smoltz; MLB Network analysts and former Roberto Clemente Award winner Al Leiter and Harold Reynolds; and MLB.com senior correspondent Hal Bodley.  

The Dodgers will recognize Kershaw's nomination on Thursday, Sept. 15, prior to their home game with the Pittsburgh Pirates.

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