A San Francisco Giants Hall of Famer and a member of the team’s current squad spoke at a Noe Valley elementary school today to encourage kids to follow their dreams and give back to their communities.
Former pitcher Juan Marichal and current Giants reliever Jeremy Affeldt joined the widow and son of baseball legend Roberto Clemente at Mission Education Center on Noe Street to visit with students.
The visit came in advance of the announcement later today of the winner of Major League Baseball’s Roberto Clemente Award. The winner will be announced before Game 2 of the World Series between the Giants and Texas Rangers.
The award is given to the player who best combines outstanding skills on the baseball field with devoted work in the community. Affeldt is the Giants’ nominee for the award.
Clemente died in 1972 in a plane crash while traveling to Nicaragua to deliver aid to earthquake victims.
Affeldt was nominated for this year’s award for his work with Not for Sale, an organization that assists youths coming out of human trafficking or slavery, and Generation Alive!, a group that tries to bring world awareness to young people and encourage them to start taking action at a young age.
“It’s an honor to be nominated for the award, but that’s not why I do it,” Affeldt said.
“I was given a chance at your age to dream, and dream really big,” he told the students. “I dreamed to be a major league ballplayer. I try to make sure everybody, all the young people in the world, also have a chance to dream really big.”
Marichal, a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame who pitched for the Giants from 1960 to 1973, covered similar themes while talking to the students. He spoke in Spanish, since Mission Education Center is a school for newly arrived immigrant students who speak only Spanish.
Marichal told the kids that if they study and dream big, “No hay nada imposible,” Spanish for “Nothing is impossible.”
Dan McMenamin, Bay City News