Washington Nationals' Ivan Rodriguez (7) questions home plate umpire Lance Barksdale after being called out on strikes against the Florida Marlins during the second inning of a baseball game in Miami, Sunday, May 8, 2011. Teams around the league wore pink-colored equipment in honor of Mother's Day. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)
On Sunday, equipment in the Washington Nationals club house came in an unusual color for a major league ball club: the bats, shoes, and wristbands all came in pink.
Sure, they are jocks, but they love their mothers too.
"I'm a bit of a momma's boy myself," manager Jim Riggleman said to MLB.com. "My step-father came into the picture later, but I'm particularly close to my mother. Every day is mother's day for me."
For the past several years, players around the league have picked up pink gear in honor of Mother's Day and to support cancer awareness.
"The commitment from clubs, players, and fans alike in the fight against breast cancer is truly special," said commissioner Bud Selig. "We are proud to highlight our efforts and increase awareness through our Mother's Day celebration."
Each major league team selects an Honorary Bat Girl on Mother's Day, chosen from a group of entrants whose lives have in some way been impacted by breast cancer.
This year, Cathy Collei, of Olney, Md., was selected by the Washington Nationals. A resident of Annapolis, Brigid Morahan, was chosen to be the Honorary Bat Girl for the Orioles.
Also on Mother's Day, bat manufacturer Louisville Slugger roll out a special Mother's Day bat, all in pink, for sale at stadiums and at MLB's website. Proceeds from the sales go to support the Susan G. Komen breast cancer awareness charity.
Taking the pink theme to the next level this year, Nats' catcher Ivan Rodriguez donned a pink catcher's mask and chest protector against the Marlins.
The Nationals' heart was in the right place Sunday, but their effort was lackluster. Finishing with a score only a mother could love, the Nationals got thumped by the Florida Marlins, 8 - 0.