OAKLAND – Reliever Sean Doolittle was honored to be voted the Oakland A’s nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award, and he places the honor in some elite company.
“It’s right up there with the Cy Young and the MVP,” Doolittle said with sincerity Monday.
The Clemente Award recognizes one player from each major league team for positive contributions on and off the field, including community involvement.
Doolittle comes from a military family and he’s been heavily involved in military-related causes. He’s worked with the Freedom Alliance, an educational and charitable organization that helps military service members and their families. He’s also visited the VA Hospital in Palo Alto.
One of his favorite experiences was visiting the Walter Reed Hospital in Washington, D.C. earlier this season when the A’s played in Baltimore.
“I got to meet some of the guys coming back from the Middle East,” Doolittle said. “They’re rehabbing injuries and learning how to live their lives with their leg amputated. It was really heavy stuff.”
A’s manager Bob Melvin is aware of the time and effort Doolittle has put into off-field causes.
“Since he’s been here, he’s been instrumental for us and a terrific guy on top of it,” Melvin said. “He does stuff in the community. He’s a standup guy. I would think they chose a candidate that’s very deserving.”