#Cubs Rizzo wins Heart and Hustle award

Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo began his acceptance speech Tuesday night at the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association’s 16th annual Legends for Youth Dinner by acknowledging the loss of pitcher Tommy Hanson. Rizzo said he didn’t know Hanson personally but said “losing anyone at 29, losing anyone in general, but 29 years of age … I want to wish him to rest in peace and gratitude for his family.”

Rizzo was named the winner of the Heart and Hustle Award at the dinner, held in New York. He talked about playing the game the right way.

“We have a very young team in Chicago, and I don’t know how I got old,” Rizzo said. “I’m the older one on the team now with a lot of younger players. I tell them every day, there’s some little kid who’s been waiting to come to this game for probably four, five or six months, he got Christmas presents to come to Wrigley Field on July 21, dog days of summer, and they’re looking forward to seeing me play, you play, him play, anyone play with a Cubs jersey on.

“With the platform we’re on, it doesn’t matter what the name is on the back, we represent a lot more than that,” he said. “That’s what I try to do every day. There’s a little kid coming to the field and if I have an 0-for-4 game, if I’m 0-for-21, that little kid doesn’t know that. Maybe his dad does and doesn’t like me very much at the time. But that little kid, when you pop up a ball and his coach tells him to run it out every time, and he sees one of the guys in the Major Leagues not running the ball out, that’s not going to set the right example.”


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Tim McGraw has a saying “Always Be Humble and Kind”. I think this describes Anthony Rizzo as a man and a baseball player. He truly has the heart and the hustle! He is thinking about the young boy in the stands who is looking up to him as a role model, not a statistic. His approach to the game is refreshing and admirable. Congratulations to Rizzo – he deserves it!

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