Tony Conigliaro, the namesake of the award
|Given for||Given annually to a Major League Baseball player who best overcomes an obstacle and adversity through the attributes of spirit, determination and courage that were trademarks of Conigliaro.|
|Presented by||Boston chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America|
|Most recent||Daniel Bard, Colorado Rockies|
The Tony Conigliaro Award is a national recognition instituted in 1990 by the Boston Red Sox to honor the memory of Tony Conigliaro. It is given annually to a Major League Baseball (MLB) player who best "overcomes an obstacle and adversity through the attributes of spirit, determination, and courage that were trademarks of Conigliaro."
Conigliaro debuted with the Red Sox in 1964, and was selected to the MLB All-Star Game in the 1967 season. Subsequently, he was hit in the face by a pitch at Fenway Park on August 18, 1967. After missing the rest of the year and all of 1968, he made a comeback in 1969, homering on opening day. He then hit 20 home runs in that season, winning The Sporting News Comeback Player of the Year Award. In 1970, he posted career highs in home runs with 36 and RBIs with 116, but vision problems continued to persist; his performance fell off, and he was never the same player. After a final comeback attempt in 1975, Conigliaro retired at age 30.
Conigliaro died in 1990, and the Red Sox instituted the award in his honor.A panel is composed of the media, representatives of the commissioner, and the two leagues' offices. The selection is made by a panel of voters and the award is presented at the annual dinner of the Boston chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America, held in January, by members of the Conigliaro family.
|Indicates multiple award winners in the same year|
|Denotes player who is still active|
|1990||Jim Eisenreich||Kansas City Royals||Tourette syndrome|
|1991||Dickie Thon||Philadelphia Phillies||A 1984 beaning very similar to the one that shortened Conigliaro's career|
|1992||Jim Abbott||California Angels||Born without a right hand|
|1993||Bo Jackson||Chicago White Sox||Hip replacement surgery in 1992|
|1994||Mark Leiter||California Angels||Death of 9-month-old son to spinal muscular atrophy during the offseason|
|1995||Scott Radinsky||Chicago White Sox||Diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma|
|1996||Curtis Pride||Montreal Expos||Born deaf|
|1997||Eric Davis||Baltimore Orioles||Diagnosed with colon cancer early that season|
|1998||Bret Saberhagen||Boston Red Sox||Serious shoulder injuries|
|1999||Mike Lowell||Florida Marlins||Testicular cancer|
|2000^||Kent Mercker||Anaheim Angels||Cerebral hemorrhage|
|2000^||Tony Saunders||Tampa Bay Devil Rays||Broke arm while throwing a pitch|
|2001^||Graeme Lloyd||Montreal Expos||Arthroscopic shoulder surgery in 2000, and the death of his wife from Crohn's disease|
|2001^||Jason Johnson||Baltimore Orioles||Type 1 diabetes that required Johnson to wear an insulin pump on the field|
|2002||José Rijo||Cincinnati Reds||Elbow injuries that required five surgeries and sidelined him for five years|
|2003||Jim Mecir||Oakland Athletics||Born with two club feet|
|2004||Dewon Brazelton||Tampa Bay Devil Rays||Reconstructive knee surgery and Tommy John surgery while in high school|
|2005||Aaron Cook||Colorado Rockies||Blood clots in both lungs|
|2006||Freddy Sanchez||Pittsburgh Pirates||Born with a club foot (right) and a severely pigeon-toed foot (left)|
|2007|| Jon Lester ||Boston Red Sox||Diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 2006|
|2008||Rocco Baldelli||Tampa Bay Rays||Diagnosed with a mitochondrial disorder that causes chronic muscle fatigue|
|2009||Chris Carpenter||St. Louis Cardinals||Had Tommy John surgery and nerve problems in his throwing arm|
|2010|| Joaquín Benoit ||Tampa Bay Rays||Sat out a year after a rotator cuff tear|
|2011|| Tony Campana ||Chicago Cubs||Diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma as a child|
|2012||R.A. Dickey||New York Mets||Victim of child sexual abuse, born without an ulnar collateral ligament in his right arm|
|2013|| John Lackey ||Boston Red Sox||Underwent Tommy John surgery in 2012|
|2014|| Wilson Ramos ||Washington Nationals||Kidnapped in 2011, multiple injuries including a torn anterior cruciate ligament, a broken hamate bone, and repeated hamstring strains|
|2015||Mitch Harris||St. Louis Cardinals||Delayed baseball career five years while serving in the United States Navy; first Naval Academy graduate to make MLB debut since 1921|
|2016|| Yangervis Solarte ||San Diego Padres||Death of his wife to cancer during the season, caring for their three young daughters|
|2017|| Chad Bettis ||Colorado Rockies||Diagnosed with testicular cancer in November 2016, underwent surgery eight days later, went through chemotherapy until May 2017, and returned to baseball activities one month later|
|2018|| Stephen Piscotty ||Oakland Athletics||Death of his mother to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis|
|2019|| Rich Hill ||Los Angeles Dodgers||Numerous arm injuries and the public announcement of the death of his son Brooks|
|2020|| Daniel Bard ||Colorado Rockies||Prior to the 2020 season, had last pitched in MLB in 2013 and had retired from professional baseball in 2017.|
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