PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Orioles right fielder Nick Markakis has teamed up with Cardinals pitcher Jason Motte's "Strike Out Cancer" initiative, serving as Baltimore's representative in the MLB-wide effort to raise funds and awareness through T-shirt sales.
The website 108stitches.com went live on March 17, with 108 Stitches showcasing the "Strike Out Cancer" tees in each team's colors. Each is promoted by a different player who agreed to join Motte in a partnership that will benefit multiple charities. Each participating player has chosen a charity that will benefit from the T-shirts sales, and for each shirt sold, $5 will go to the Jason Motte Foundation and $5 to a charity of that player's choice. A full list of recipient charities will be listed on the 108 Stitches website soon, along with a photo of each player rep in his team-colored shirt.
"At the end of the day, it's about reaching people," Motte said. "Baseball is great and everything, but there are other really important things going on out there that affect a lot of people. Wearing these T-shirts shows people that they're not alone. They're not sitting there doing chemo by themselves where no one cares. People do care, whether it's friends, family or baseball players. There are people who this has touched and this has affected. This is something we're trying to do to get the word out there and try to raise money to help."
Markakis' mother, Mary Lou, is a breast cancer survivor, and the Orioles lost a member of their family, public relations director Monica Barlow, to lung cancer this spring.
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. Maureen Mullen is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.