More than 200 Major League players signed up to use pink Louisville Slugger bats in Sunday's games to help raise awareness for breast cancer. 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.
Feliz and Alfonzo didn't use the pink bats for the entire game, but both contributed significantly to the Giants' victory. Feliz went 2-for-6 with two RBIs and Alfonzo went 3-for-6. He also threw out fleet Willy Taveras on a stolen-base attempt in the first inning.
Both Feliz and Alfonzo welcomed the opportunity to participate in the pink bat venture, particularly since it meant honoring important women in their lives.
Feliz, 31, spoke reverently of his mother, Candida, calling her "the best mother in the world."
Feliz recalled the assistance his mother provided when he was an aspiring ballplayer growing up in the Dominican Republic. If Feliz needed money to pay for equipment or a trip with his youth-league team, she'd come through.
"She was my No. 1 supporter," Feliz said. "Anything that I needed, she was there to help."
Feliz has continued to have a strong female presence in his life. He and his wife, Niurka, have four children, all girls.
Alfonzo, 28, swung his pink bat on behalf of not only his mother, Miguelin, but also his wife, Patricia.
Of his mother, Alfonzo said, "She taught me to respect elders and put me on a straight path."
Alfonzo has repeatedly maintained that without his wife, he might not be in the Major Leagues. Alfonzo was prepared to quit baseball several years ago, but Patricia urged him to follow his passion.
"She's told me don't put my head down, keep it up," Alfonzo said.