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MLB legend Roberto Clemente would've turned 81 today

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Roberto Clemente's career
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MLB legend Roberto Clemente would've turned 81 today
PITTSBURGH - CIRCA 1960s: Outfielder Roberto Clemente #21of Pittsburgh Pirates stands at the plate ready to hit during a MLB baseball game circa early 1960s at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Clemente played for the Pirates from 1955-72. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
Outfielder Roberto Clemente #21 of the Pittsburgh Pirates takes a breather on the field during the 1960s. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
Pittsburgh Pirates baseball players Roberto Clemente and Dick Groat examining bat on Forbes Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, circa 1960-1962. (Photo by Charles 'Teenie' Harris/Carnegie Museum of Art/Getty Images)
CIRCA 1960's: Outfielder Roberto Clemente' #21 of Pittsburgh Pirates poses for this photo before a MLB baseball game circa mid 1960's. Clemente' Played for the Pirates from 1955-72. (Photo by Focus On Sport/Getty Images)
Two men presenting trophy to Pittsburgh Pirates baseball player Roberto Clemente at Forbes Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, circa 1966. (Photo by Charles 'Teenie' Harris/Carnegie Museum of Art/Getty Images)
Vera Clemente, Roberto Clemente, and their son Roberto Clemente Jr., seated on chair in their apartment in East Liberty, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, June 1966. (Photo by Charles 'Teenie' Harris/Carnegie Museum of Art/Getty Images)
CIRCA 1970s: Outfielder Roberto Clemente #21of Pittsburgh Pirates leads off of second base during a MLB baseball game circa early 1970s. Clemente played for the Pirates from 1955-72. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 1971: Roberto Clemente #21 of the Pittsburgh Pirates hugs the bag after sliding in during the World Series against the Baltimore Orioles at Three Rivers Stadium on October 1971 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Focus On Sport/Getty Images)
1972: Roberto Clemente of the Pittsburgh Pirates poses for a photo circa 1972. ( Photo by Louis Requena/ MLB Photos via Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 1971: Outfielder Roberto Clemente #21 of the Pittsburgh Pirates races down the first baseline against the Baltimore Orioles during the World Series October 1971 at Three Riverfront Stadium in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. The Pirates won the series 4-3. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH - Roberto Clemente #21 of the Pittsburgh Pirates talks to the media after getting his 3000th hit against the New York Mets at Three Rivers Stadium on September 30, 1972 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by: Morris Berman/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
SAN JUAN PUERTO RICO - CIRCA 1972: Roberto Clemente, wife Vera and sons; Roberto Jr. Roberto Enrique and Roberto Luis and formerGovernor of Puerto Rico, Luis A. Ferre at the Governors palace of Santa Catalina in San Juan, Puerto Rico. (Photo by Ed Fernandez/Sporting News via Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH - SEPTEMBER 30: Roberto Clemente #21 of the Pittsburgh Pirates is shown tipping his hat after collecting career hit number 3,000, his last regular season hit ever, against the New York Mets at Three Rivers Stadium on September 30, 1972 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Pirates defeated the Mets 5-0. (Photo by Morris Berman/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
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Roberto Clemente was one of the most game-changing men that baseball has ever known. A member of the 3,000 hit club, a 15-time All Star and two-time World Series champion, Clemente is a legend not only among the Pittsburgh Pirates community but the MLB realm as a whole.

Clemente died prematurely on Dec. 31, 1972 at the age of 38, when attempting to deliver aid packages to an earthquake-ridden Nicaragua. His plane crashed into the ocean shortly after takeoff. He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame the following year -- bypassing the customary five-year wait upon retirement.

On what would've been Clemente's 81st birthday, we take time to remember the icon's legacy. Click through the gallery above to see Clemente in action over his 18-year career, and watch the video below for a brief biography.

Roberto Clemente - Mini Biography

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