Cleat Geeks

Rizzo “Stands Up”

On the baseball field, Anthony Rizzo makes things look easy. After being drafted by the Boston Red Sox, he quickly established himself as a force in the minors, becoming a highly-coveted prospect. After a quick stop in San Diego, Rizzo was traded to the Chicago Cubs, where he has developed into one of the best players in the game.

Fans might look at Rizzo’s success; his All-Star appearances and MVP-type numbers, and wonder how his journey to the majors has gone so smooth. But, smooth is not how I would describe the journey to prominent MLB superstar for Anthony Rizzo.Second-Annual-Cook-Off-RizzoFoundationewithKids

Shortly after he was drafted, Rizzo was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Rizzo underwent a six months of chemotherapy, and officially went into remission in September 2008.

It’s an inspirational story, and it makes Rizzo the perfect candidate to headline Major League Baseball’s latest Stand Up To Cancer PSA. The spot, which will air during Game 3 of the World Series, shows home-movie footage of prominent players when they were younger. After seeing three current major leaguers as kids, the commercial features a child who is either currently batting cancer, or who has previously defeated the disease.

There are actually three spots, but only one of them will be broadcast on television. The other two will be shown on the internet. You can watch the internet-exclusive videos over at

rizzo2Rizzo has been joined by Mike Trout, Bryce Harper, David Price, Felix Hernandez and Andrew McCutchen in the commercials. All six players personally expressed interest in being a part of the spots. Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Glavine is not in the PSAs, but he’s also involved in the campaign.

The spots are touching on their own, but take on a whole different meaning if you’re aware of Rizzo’s story.

MLB has done a strong job raising awareness for the foundation over the past couple years. They’ve held moments of silence for those who have battled the disease during prominent games, and consistently roll out new PSAs during the most-viewed events of the season.

Rizzo didn’t let a cancer diagnosis stop him from achieving great things. That makes him the ideal role model for kids currently battling the disease. We at praise Rizzo for his overcoming of the terrible disease and the fact that he is standing against it as well.

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