Major League teams helped ring in Mother's Day on Sunday by using pink bats produced by Louisville Slugger. Many players wore pink wristbands and a symbolic pink ribbon for breast cancer awareness on their uniforms, and the lineup cards were even pink as the league formed a united front.
"It's for a good cause," said Luke Scott, the Orioles' designated hitter. "It's a special day. We think about our mothers. My mother's been a tremendous blessing for me, and I'm very thankful for her."
The pink hue was evident all around Camden Yards on Sunday, and the vast majority of Baltimore's starting lineup used pink bats. Aubrey Huff used the keepsake to hit a three-run home run in the first inning, but the Yankees kept the Orioles from notching too many more memorable hits with their off-color lumber.
"I've done it every year for the last four years," said Huff. "They're pretty, so I may as well use them."
Pink bats have become annual Mother's Day symbols as part of an overall "Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer" initiative by Major League Baseball that raises awareness about breast cancer and directs proceeds to Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Fans play the next big role in this process, because attention will move now to the MLB.com Auction and the gradual arrival of game-used pink bats, home plates and logo bases and lineup cards.
Fans also can purchase their own personalized "Mother's Day 2009" pink bats right now for $79.99 apiece at the MLB.com Shop, with $10 from the sale of each one going to Komen.
The Orioles also chose an honorary bat girl on Sunday, opting to recognize local mother Cathy Greer, who has three children and was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2000 at the age of 42. Greer, who has been in remission for several years, took part in an on-field ceremony before Sunday's game against the Yankees.
And then, after that, there was nothing left to do but play the game. The Orioles won't be able to use their pink bats or wristbands again anytime soon, but they enjoyed the experienced for what it was worth.
"We obviously realize the meaning," said second baseman Brian Roberts. "We know it's for a good cause."
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.