CINCINNATI -- While drenching the handles of his new pink bats with pine tar last year, Craig Biggio noted that he finally had a neat souvenir to give to his daughter.

Other players who used pink bats last year on Mother's Day appeared to be equally as enthusiastic about the now-annual tradition, one that has become an enormously popular promotion that shines light on a very worthy cause.

A number of Major League players will help raise awareness for breast cancer on Mother's Day, May 13, by using pink Louisville Slugger bats. To date, more than 200 players have signed up to use a pink bat, more than twice the participation in 2006.

Select game-used bats, as well as team-autographed bats from every club, will be auctioned on MLB.com at a later date, with proceeds benefiting Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Fans can also purchase their own personalized pink bat at MLB.com or www.slugger.com, with Major League Baseball donating $10 from the sale of each bat to benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

This year the Astros are anticipating that 11 players will use pink bats on Mother's Day: Brad Ausmus, Lance Berkman, Biggio, Morgan Ensberg, Adam Everett, Mike Lamb, Mark Loretta, Chris Burke, Jason Lane, Carlos Lee and Orlando Palmeiro.

"It's a nice tribute," Loretta said. "It's nice to do. It's similar to Father's Day, when we promote colon cancer awareness."

And, he joked, "it shows our softer side."

"I'll be all pink," he added. "I'm in."

Major League Baseball and its 30 clubs are again joining Susan G. Komen for the Cure for "Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer," a program that incorporates numerous facets of the game both on and off the field to generate awareness about breast cancer and raise funds to help fight the disease.

The initiative, which runs until May 19, will celebrate Mother's Day with programs at each ballpark hosting a home game on Sunday, May 13.

Mothers Day
Game goes to bat for breast cancer

During "Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer," fans can support the initiative by logging onto a MLB-themed microsite (www.komen.org/mlb) and making a monetary pledge in the name of a specific team or to the general cause. Donations made in a team's name will go toward programs in that team's community to support breast health and breast cancer awareness.

The donations can be made at five levels: "Single" ($25), "Double" ($50), "Triple" ($75), "Home Run" ($100) and "Grand Slam" ($250). Major League Baseball Charities has also committed an additional $50,000 on top of the fan donation total.

"Major League Baseball is proud to again partner with Susan G. Komen for the Cure to help raise awareness and funds for a disease that affects so many women and their families," said Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig. "It is important to all of us in baseball that our clubs, players, licensees and fans give back to our communities in such a meaningful way."