Roberto Clemente

Roberto Clemente

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by Susan Muaddi Darraj, Rob Maaddi
     
 

Roberto Clemente's life represents the ultimate rags-to-riches story: Growing up in poverty in Puerto Rico, the young Clemente never imagined that one day he would make a difference not only in the life of his family, but also in the lives of thousands of others. The vehicle he used to transform his life was the sport of baseball.

In just a few years, Clemente went

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Overview

Roberto Clemente's life represents the ultimate rags-to-riches story: Growing up in poverty in Puerto Rico, the young Clemente never imagined that one day he would make a difference not only in the life of his family, but also in the lives of thousands of others. The vehicle he used to transform his life was the sport of baseball.

In just a few years, Clemente went from playing baseball with a tree branch and a ball of string in a Puerto Rican barrio to playing major league ball for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Because of his skin color and poor English skills, Clemente faced racism and discrimination on his journey to mainland success. Before long, however, Clemente won the hearts and respect of the Pittsburgh fans. He accomplished this with his tremendous playing ability and his great humanitarian spirit. After his death in a plane crash in 1972, Clemente was inducted posthumously into the Hall of Fame-the first Latin American player to receive that honor.

About the Author:
Susan Muaddi Darraj is associate professor of English at Harford Community College in Bel Air, Maryland

About the Author:
Rob Maaddi is a sportswriter and editor for The Associated Press

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Leslie Greaves Radloff
Part of the "Great Hispanic Heritage" series, this birth-to-grave biography of baseball great and the first Hispanic American to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, Roberto Clemente, provides information about everything his childhood in Puerto Rico to his untimely death in 1972 while on a mercy mission delivering help for earthquake survivors in Nicaragua. Young readers may not fully understand the impact that Clemente had on the game of baseball, nor grasp the reasons why he was well-respected and liked by fans and players, but using the formula of the series, the authors try to bring insights into the person of Clemente. Many pictures are included, along with an index, glossary, timeline, and suggestions for further reading. The titles in this series are heavy on text, though it is broken up by photographs and textboxes with information shedding more light on the subject. Readers will find that he was private, not given to much talk, caring, and, seemingly, a family man. They also will learn about the government corruption in the countries hit by the earthquake that made giving and getting aid to people in need all but impossible. Readers will be surprised to find that the magnificent sum of $5,000 for the first year in baseball was Clemente's pay, along with a $10,000 bonus, a huge amount of money in the early 1950s, and for someone whose father had earned less than $50 a month as foreman of a sugarcane company. This series for older students in junior high or high fills the need for information about the contributions of Hispanic Americans. Reviewer: Leslie Greaves Radloff

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780791096918
Publisher:
Facts on File, Incorporated
Publication date:
02/28/2008
Series:
The Great Hispanic Heritage Series
Pages:
120
Sales rank:
1,393,107
Product dimensions:
6.70(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
11 - 14 Years

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