New York — A star-studded lineup will be honored at the 38th Annual Thurman Munson Awards Dinner on Tuesday night, February 6, at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City to benefit AHRC New York City Foundation which assists children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. These are the award recipients: Two switch-hitting native sons of Puerto Rico and perennial All-Stars – four-time New York Yankees World Series Champion Jorge Posada, and former Mets and Yankees outfielder and Houston Astros World Series champion Carlos Beltran – will receive the Thurman LEGEND Award; and Yankees standout pitcher David Robertson, New York Mets infielder and Bronx product T.J. Rivera, and two-time New York Giants Super Bowl champion Justin Tuck will each be presented with the Thurman Munson Award.
The gala remembers the late great Yankees captain and catcher Thurman Munson and has raised more than $15 million for the AHRC NYC Foundation which supports programs that enable children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to lead richer, more productive lives. Thurman’s widow Diana Munson will attend her 38th consecutive benefit, having been involved in the dinner since its inception.
Michael Kay, the “Voice of the Yankees” on YES Network and host of The Michael Kay Show on ESPN New York Radio 98.7 FM, will serve as Master of Ceremonies.
The Thurman Munson Awards are presented annually for success and inspiration on the fields of play, and community spirit off the field. The Thurman Legend Award is presented periodically for on-field excellence, community service, and lifetime contributions to society and the game. Yankees icon Yogi Berra, Thurman’s teammates Lou Piniella and Graig Nettles, Yankees World Champion outfielder Bernie Williams, and he “Shot Heard ‘Round the World” duo of Brooklyn Dodgers’ pitcher Ralph Branca and New York Giants’ outfielder Bobby Thomson.
The AHRC New York City Foundation is a not-for-profit organization that supports programs enabling children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to lead richer, more productive lives, including programs of AHRC New York City. AHRC New York City is one of the largest organizations of its kind, serving 15,000 children and adults who have intellectual and developmental disabilities, including autism, cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injuries and other disabilities.
All of the five honorees are dedicated to community service. Both Posada and Beltran have spearheaded Hurricane Relief efforts for victims in their native Puerto Rico; the Jorge Posada Foundation assists those afflicted with Craniosynostosis, while the Carlos Beltran Foundation empowers young people to reach their dreams through sports and education; Robertson has furnished homes and supplies for the less fortunate in New York, New Jersey, Alabama and Louisiana impacted by natural disasters through his High Socks for Hope Foundation; Rivera was the Mets nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award for his community efforts; and Tuck is widely known for his literacy efforts through the Tuck R.U.S.H. for Literacy foundation.
Posada, a member of the Yankees “Core Four” club that won four championships (1998, ’99, 2000 and ’09), enjoyed a big-league career that spanned 17 years, all with the Bombers, with 1,664 hits, 275 homeruns and 1,065 RBI as a five-time All-Star. Beltran produced 2,725 hits, 435 homeruns and 1,587 RBI as a nine-time All-Star including seven years with the Mets and three with the Yankees, and put an exclamation point on his career with a World Series championship in Houston last year. For stat mavens, this Munson Legend tandem from Puerto Rico combined for 4,389 hits, 710 home runs, 2,652 RBI, 14 All Star appearances and five World Series rings.
Reliable reliever Robertson has worn the Pinstripes for eight years, seven straight seasons beginning in 2006 before returning to New York last season. His two tenures have included 48 of his 132 total career saves, an All Star appearance in 2011, and one World Series Championship in 2009. The native of Birmingham, Alabama, who was drafted by the Yankees in 2006, and in his return to New York last year posted a tidy 1.03 ERA with an unblemished 5-0 record in key appearances out of the pen.
Yet another Munson honoree of Puerto Rican heritage, New York product Rivera TJ Rivera has defied logic of an undrafted player climbing the ranks in the Mets organization to achieve MLB status. The versatile infielder enjoyed eight seasons with a batting average over .300 beginning with the Brooklyn Cyclones (.326 in 2011) through 2016 with Triple A Las Vegas, hitting a blistering .353. The hot bat continued with the big league Mets, batting .333 in his first call the majors in 2016, and just missing last year at .290 before injury curtailed his season
Tuck proudly wears two championship rings as a key member of the Giants Super Bowl XLII (2007) and Super Bowl XLVI (2011) champions, with epic victories over the favored New England Patriots. During nine seasons at defensive end with Big Blue, Tuck is a two-time Pro Bowl participant. The Notre Dame product was inducted into the Giants Ring of Honor in 2016.