Hey look something other than fried chicken and beer news for the Boston Red Sox. Here’s the release:

David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox was named the 2011 recipient of the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet today at a press conference prior to Game Two of the World Series at Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Missouri.

Boston Red SoxThe Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet recognizes the Major League Baseball player who best represents the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field. The annual award, 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, pays tribute to Clemente’s achievements and character by recognizing current players who truly understand the value of helping others.

“Major League Baseball is pleased to present David Ortiz with the 2011 Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet,” said Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig. “David’s remarkable commitment to helping children receive essential pediatric care in the United States and the Dominican Republic makes him a wonderful choice for this honor. The legacy of the great Roberto Clemente lives on through the selfless actions of players like David and so many of his peers.”

Ortiz was selected from a list of 30 Club nominees, which included twelve 2011 MLB All-Stars, by a panel of dignitaries that included Commissioner Selig and Vera Clemente, MLB Goodwill Ambassador and wife of Roberto Clemente; Hall of Famer, TBS analyst and 1992 Roberto Clemente Award winner Cal Ripken Jr.; MLB Network analyst, TBS broadcaster and 2005 Roberto Clemente Award winner John Smoltz; MLB Network analysts and former Roberto Clemente Award winners Al Leiter (2000) and Harold Reynolds (1991); ESPN analyst and 1993 Roberto Clemente Award winner Barry Larkin; ESPN analyst and former MLB All-Star Nomar Garciaparra; and MLB.com senior correspondent Hal Bodley. Additionally, fans were encouraged to log on to www.chevybaseball.com/clemente, powered by MLB.com and created specifically for the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet platform, and cast a vote for one of the 30 nominees.

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In 2005, after visiting young children who had just received life-saving heart operations in his native Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Ortiz founded the David Ortiz Children’s Fund (DOCF). Dedicated to raising funds to help provide children access to critical pediatric care in the Dominican Republic and the United States, the DOCF formed an official partnership with the Massachusetts General Hospital for Children (MGH) in 2009 to continue and extend its lifesaving mission in New England. In 2010, the DOCF raised more than $1.5 million, providing funding for more than 200 life-saving heart operations and helping numerous children in New England receive the care they needed. Ortiz personally donated $100,000 to the DOCF in 2011.

Additionally, Ortiz annually donates his time and resources to benefit MGH and other organizations, programs and causes. As part of his “Papi’s Pals” initiative, Ortiz purchased blocks of tickets at Red Sox games to donate to MGH patients. He has also participated in holiday and direct mail programs to benefit MGH patients, as well as additional Red Sox and Boston-related charitable causes. In January 2010, Ortiz donated food and medical supplies to support those affected by the earthquake that struck Haiti, and encouraged fans to help in the relief effort.

“I am incredibly honored to be the recipient of this year’s Award,” said Ortiz. “It’s humbling to be associated with all the tremendous names that have won this Award in the past, and I look forward to continuing to do my part to maintain Roberto Clemente’s legacy.”

“David Ortiz is a great choice among an outstanding group of candidates for the 2011 Roberto Clemente Award,” said Vera Clemente. “He has been a deserving candidate for many years and I am very happy to see him win. The hands-on work he has done over the years and the money he has donated in Boston, Haiti and the Dominican Republic is a wonderful example for all players, and I know Roberto would have been very proud of his selection.”

Ortiz joins a distinguished list of national Roberto Clemente Award recipients, which includes 13 members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame:

1971 Willie Mays* 1981 Steve Garvey 1991 Harold Reynolds 2001 Curt Schilling
1972 Brooks Robinson* 1982 Ken Singleton 1992 Cal Ripken, Jr.* 2002 Jim Thome
1973 Al Kaline* 1983 Cecil Cooper 1993 Barry Larkin 2003 Jamie Moyer
1974 Willie Stargell* 1984 Ron Guidry 1994 Dave Winfield* 2004 Edgar Martinez
1975 Lou Brock* 1985 Don Baylor 1995 Ozzie Smith* 2005 John Smoltz
1976 Pete Rose 1986 Garry Maddox 1996 Kirby Puckett* 2006 Carlos Delgado
1977 Rod Carew* 1987 Rick Sutcliffe 1997 Eric Davis 2007 Craig Biggio
1978 Greg Luzinski 1988 Dale Murphy 1998 Sammy Sosa 2008 Albert Pujols
1979 Andre Thornton 1989 Gary Carter* 1999 Tony Gwynn* 2009 Derek Jeter
1980 Phil Niekro* 1990 Dave Stewart 2000 Al Leiter 2010 Tim Wakefield

* Member of The National Baseball Hall of Fame

In his 15-year Major League career with the Minnesota Twins (1997-2002) and the Boston Red Sox (2003-present), David Ortiz has amassed a .283 batting average, 378 home runs, 1,266 RBI, a .378 onbase percentage and a .544 slugging percentage. An American League All-Star in seven of the last eight seasons, Ortiz finished in the top five of A.L. Most Valuable Player balloting for five consecutive seasons from 2003-2007. Ortiz led all of Major League Baseball with 148 RBI in 2005, and he paced the A.L. with 54 home runs and 137 RBI in 2006. Only Hall of Famer Ted Williams, who put up eight seasons of 30 or more home runs, has more 30-homer seasons for the Red Sox than David’s six. Ortiz, who has the most home runs and RBI of any designated hitter in Major League Baseball history, was an integral part of Boston’s World Series Championship clubs in 2004 and 2007. With his .387 batting average, three home runs and 11 RBI, he earned MVP honors in the 2004 American League Championship Series, in which the Red Sox made a historic comeback from a 3-0 deficit against the New York Yankees. Ortiz has posted eight RBI in his eight career World Series games, in which the Red Sox have earned a perfect 8-0 record. The Santo Domingo native was the American League recipient of the 2005 Hank Aaron Award, recognizing the most outstanding offensive player, and in 2010, Ortiz was the champion of the State Farm Home Run Derby during All-Star Week at Angel Stadium.

For a full biography of David Ortiz’s charitable endeavors, please visit the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet page at www.chevybaseball.com/clemente. For more information about the David Ortiz Children’s Fund, please visit www.DavidOrtizChildrensFund.org.