Chicago, IL, December 13, 2019
The Chicago Scouts Association is pleased to announce Mike Rizzo as the 2019 recipient of the Charlie Donovan Memorial “Passion for the Game” Award. The award, which is sponsored by the Chicago Scouts Association, is given to an individual who has exhibited passion for their craft within the baseball industry.
Rizzo, born and raised in Chicago, is the President of Baseball Operations and General Manager of the Washington Nationals of Major League Baseball.
Upon the conclusion of his minor league baseball career, Rizzo transitioned into coaching and scouting. He became the director of scouting for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2000. Rizzo joined the Nationals in 2006 as an assistant general manager. He succeeded Jim Bowden as the Nationals' general manager in 2009, and was promoted to team president in 2013. Rizzo and the Nationals won the franchise's first World Series in 2019, defeating the Houston Astros in seven games.
Since he took over as general manager in 2009, the Nationals have won 938 games with a .527 winning percentage. Since 2012, the first year the Nationals made the playoffs, only the Dodgers have a better regular-season record.
Washington Nationals Special Assistant to the General Manager, Steve Arnieri said, “Mike embodies his Chicago roots: loyal, broad-shouldered, and forever passionate about the game and the people that play it and work in it. He’s a true baseball man, a scout’s scout and an inspirational leader. He would have loved Charlie, not only for the way he played the game but for the respect, class and compassion he had for all. Once again, your selection committee is spot-on”. It’s that determination that makes Mike the perfect recipient of Charlie’s award.
- 2016: Pierson Gibis
- 2017: Chris Singleton
- 2018: Bren Spillane
The award is a custom design and the creation of Barnwood Sports Design, designer of custom made home plates.
The mission of the Chicago Scouts Association is to perpetuate the sport of baseball within the Chicago land area, to enhance the community spirit and to provide for the well-being of our youth through positive and supportive endeavors.