Tony Conigliaro Award

Last updated

Tony Conigliaro
Tony Conigliaro.jpg
Tony Conigliaro, the namesake of the award
Given forGiven 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 byBoston chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America
History
First award1990
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."

Contents

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. [1]

Conigliaro died in 1990, and the Red Sox instituted the award in his honor. [2] 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. [3]

Award winners

Jim Abbott Cannons.jpg
Jim Abbott learned how to pitch and use a glove with only one hand.
Lester Warms.jpg
Jon Lester helped the Red Sox win the 2007 World Series, one year after undergoing treatment for cancer.
^
Indicates multiple award winners in the same year
Double-dagger-14-plain.png
Denotes player who is still active
YearPlayerTeamAdversity overcomeRef
1990 Jim Eisenreich Kansas City Royals Tourette syndrome [2]
1991 Dickie Thon Philadelphia Phillies A 1984 beaning very similar to the one that shortened Conigliaro's career [2] [4]
1992 Jim Abbott California Angels Born without a right hand [5] [6]
1993 Bo Jackson Chicago White Sox Hip replacement surgery in 1992 [7]
1994 Mark Leiter California Angels Death of 9-month-old son to spinal muscular atrophy during the offseason [8]
1995 Scott Radinsky Chicago White Sox Diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma [9]
1996 Curtis Pride Montreal Expos Born deaf [10]
1997 Eric Davis Baltimore Orioles Diagnosed with colon cancer early that season [11]
1998 Bret Saberhagen Boston Red Sox Serious shoulder injuries [12]
1999 Mike Lowell Florida Marlins Testicular cancer [13]
2000^ Kent Mercker Anaheim Angels Cerebral hemorrhage [14]
2000^ Tony Saunders Tampa Bay Devil Rays Broke arm while throwing a pitch [14]
2001^ Graeme Lloyd Montreal Expos Arthroscopic shoulder surgery in 2000, and the death of his wife from Crohn's disease [15]
2001^ Jason Johnson Baltimore Orioles Type 1 diabetes that required Johnson to wear an insulin pump on the field [16]
2002 José Rijo Cincinnati Reds Elbow injuries that required five surgeries and sidelined him for five years [17]
2003 Jim Mecir Oakland Athletics Born with two club feet [18]
2004 Dewon Brazelton Tampa Bay Devil Rays Reconstructive knee surgery and Tommy John surgery while in high school [19]
2005 Aaron Cook Colorado Rockies Blood clots in both lungs [20]
2006 Freddy Sanchez Pittsburgh Pirates Born with a club foot (right) and a severely pigeon-toed foot (left) [21]
2007 Jon Lester Double-dagger-14-plain.png Boston Red Sox Diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 2006 [22]
2008 Rocco Baldelli Tampa Bay Rays Diagnosed with a mitochondrial disorder that causes chronic muscle fatigue [23]
2009 Chris Carpenter St. Louis Cardinals Had Tommy John surgery and nerve problems in his throwing arm [24]
2010 Joaquín Benoit Double-dagger-14-plain.png Tampa Bay Rays Sat out a year after a rotator cuff tear [25]
2011 Tony Campana Double-dagger-14-plain.png Chicago Cubs Diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma as a child [26]
2012 R.A. Dickey New York Mets Victim of child sexual abuse, born without an ulnar collateral ligament in his right arm [27]
2013 John Lackey Double-dagger-14-plain.png Boston Red Sox Underwent Tommy John surgery in 2012 [28]
2014 Wilson Ramos Double-dagger-14-plain.png Washington Nationals Kidnapped in 2011, multiple injuries including a torn anterior cruciate ligament, a broken hamate bone, and repeated hamstring strains [29]
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 [30]
2016 Yangervis Solarte Double-dagger-14-plain.png San Diego Padres Death of his wife to cancer during the season, caring for their three young daughters [31]
2017 Chad Bettis Double-dagger-14-plain.png 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 [32]
2018 Stephen Piscotty Double-dagger-14-plain.png Oakland Athletics Death of his mother to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis [33]
2019 Rich Hill Double-dagger-14-plain.png Los Angeles Dodgers Numerous arm injuries and the public announcement of the death of his son Brooks [34]
2020 Daniel Bard Double-dagger-14-plain.png Colorado Rockies Prior to the 2020 season, had last pitched in MLB in 2013 and had retired from professional baseball in 2017. [35]

See also

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References

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