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Roberto Clemente honored: #Retire21

Clemente Edwin Lugo / via Flickr

MLB

 

#Retire21, says Ortiz.

David Ortiz just brought something to Major league baseballs attention.  He wants to see the #21 retired all across baseball in honor of legendary Hall of fame player, Roberto Clemente.

On August 18, 1934 in a hospital in Carolina, Puerto Rico, Roberto Enrique Clemente Walker was born.  We in America know him as, Roberto Clemente.

Clemente the son of a sugar cane farmer grew up in the middle of a Great Depression, but also at a time when baseball was beginning to take Puerto Rico by storm.

Major League Baseball began to take notice of the growing popularity in the Caribbean leagues. They started searching for players that could make an immediate impact, at an affordable price tag.

By the 1950’s Clemente was finally of age and baseball had now grown and was booming all across the island.  It didn’t take long for the Pittsburgh Pirates to recognize that Roberto Clemente was a very special player.

His Debut.

On April 17, 1955, Roberto Clemente made his Major League début.  Clemente would go on to become the first Latin player to record 3000 hits. He was also the first to be elected into the baseball Hall of Fame.

His achievements within the game, his pride in his homeland of Puerto Rico, and his untimely death from a plane crash on December 31, 1972, while delivering goods to earthquake victims in Nicaragua, has left him as one of the most memorable and beloved players in history.

David Ortiz.

On June 1, 2016, Boston RedSox, David Ortiz took to Twitter to express his feelings on what he believed MLB needs to do to honor Clemente.

I will love to see this number one day retire of baseball with all the respect every one deserve #retire21 pic.twitter.com/C8dheIGR52

— David Ortiz (@davidortiz) May 31, 2016

In 2011 Ortiz was named winner of the Roberto Clemente Award, honoring a major league player for contributions on and off the field.

Ortiz founded the David Ortiz Children’s Fund, and has raised millions of dollars for medical treatment of children in need in both the U.S. and the Dominican Republic.

“It’s a great honor for me being part of this award, being mentioned with Roberto Clemente,” Ortiz said at a press conference in St. Louis. “It’s not just for us to be successful. It’s for us to open our hands and try to help someone else.”

As Ortiz nears the end of his career, after announcing 2016 would be his final season.  He sees the importance of recognizing Clemente. Not only for the great Latin player he was, but for the great man he was also.

Clemente once said

I want to be remembered as a ballplayer who gave all I had to give.”

There is no doubt he achieved this, but maybe David Ortiz is right.  It is time for the MLB to give all they have and #RETIRE21.

 

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