MLB announces winners of 2016 Honorary Bat Girl contest

Fans will be honored as part of Mother's Day and breast cancer awareness recognitions in MLB ballparks

Major League Baseball today announced the winners of the 2016 Honorary Bat Girl Contest, which recognizes baseball fans who have been affected by breast cancer and who demonstrate a commitment to supporting the fight against the disease. Winners have been selected to represent each of the 30 MLB Clubs and will be recognized on-field at Major League ballparks on Mother's Day, Sunday, May 8th, or on an alternative date for clubs that are away.

Fans from across the United States and in Canada shared inspirational stories of hope and motivation in their experiences in the fight against breast cancer, as well as the reasons they, or their nominees, should represent their favorite team. The complete list of winners is located in the below chart and each of the winners' stories can be found on HonoraryBatGirl.com. During MLB's annual Mother's Day national day of recognition, the Honorary Bat Girl winners will take part in pre-game activities, be honored during an on-field ceremony and receive pink MLB merchandise with two tickets to the game. For clubs that are away on Mother's Day, another home game later in May will be selected to recognize their Honorary Bat Girl.

Following is the list of all 2016 Honorary Bat Girl Contest winners (Clubs in alphabetical order; * = Home on Mother's Day):

CLUB

CONTEST WINNER

HOMETOWN

Arizona Diamondbacks

Pamela Frye

Phoenix, AZ

Atlanta Braves*

Carol Thomas

Guntersville, AL

Baltimore Orioles*

Crystal Silins

Norfolk, VA

Boston Red Sox

Katy Bell

Oxford, CT

Chicago Cubs*

Molly Oliver

Chicago, IL

Chicago White Sox*

Margaret Kupres

Oak Lawn, IL

Cincinnati Reds*

Caitlin Adkins

Amelia, OH

Cleveland Indians*

Eva Johnson

Tampa, FL

Colorado Rockies

Katie Parker

Rapid City, SD

Detroit Tigers*

Penny Russell

New Boston, MI

Houston Astros*

Belinda Sheldon

Humble, TX

Kansas City Royals

Nancy Monasmith

Independence, MO

Los Angeles Angels*

Patricia Raburn

Orange, CA

Los Angeles Dodgers

Melissa Stockhoff

Houston, TX

Miami Marlins*

Mayra Ordiales

Miami, FL

Milwaukee Brewers

Melisa Palacios

Racine, WI

Minnesota Twins

Chiloe Kottke

Springfield, MN

New York Mets

Allison Carney

Woodside, NY

New York Yankees*

Renée Heine

Wayne, NJ

Oakland Athletics

Lori Baca

Clayton, CA

Philadelphia Phillies

Linda Duaime

Philadelphia, PA

Pittsburgh Pirates

Kirsten Zinsser

Arlington, VA

San Diego Padres*

Christine Trimble

San Diego, CA

San Francisco Giants*

Monique Glowniak

Folsom, CA

Seattle Mariners

Elizabeth Haffner

Kennewick, WA

St. Louis Cardinals*

Christina Sego

Sullivan, MO

Tampa Bay Rays

Pamela Ingram

Wesley Chapel, FL

Texas Rangers

Ronda Ashenfelter

Tuscola, TX

Toronto Blue Jays*

Michelle Riccio

Mississauga, ON

Washington Nationals

Corinne Irwin

Washington, D.C.

The winners were selected by a panel of judges, including special guest judges, who chose the winning submissions based on the following criteria: originality, quality of writing, demonstration of commitment to breast cancer awareness and public appeal (as determined by online fan votes). Health & wellness expert and star of Just Jillian on E! Network, Jillian Michaels, as well as Gregor Blanco of the San Francisco Giants, Robinson Chirinos of the Texas Rangers, Zach Duke of the Chicago White Sox, Freddie Freeman of the Atlanta Braves, Kevin Gausman of the Baltimore Orioles, Curtis Granderson of the New York Mets, Jeremy Jeffress of the Milwaukee Brewers, Scott Kazmir of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Taijuan Walker of the Seattle Mariners, Jered Weaver of the Los Angeles Angels, Sam Ryan & Chris Rose of MLB Network and Lindsay Berra & Alyson Footer of MLB.com served as guest judges for the contest. Michaels is an ambassador for Stand Up To Cancer, a program of the Entertainment Industry Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization.

On Mother's Day, players and on-field personnel will wear the symbolic pink ribbon on their uniforms along with pink wrist bands. Players also will wear specially-designed uniforms that incorporate pink into the Clubs' regular logos. Commemorative base jewels and dugout lineup cards also will be pink. Games will feature a pink-stitched Rawlings baseball, the official ball of MLB, as the official game ball. Many MLB players also will use pink bats, and pink Louisville Slugger bats, the Official Bat of Major League Baseball, will be stamped with the MLB breast cancer awareness logo. Many authenticated, game-used Louisville Slugger pink bats and other pink items from Mother's Day games will be auctioned exclusively on MLB.com/auction to benefit the fight against breast cancer.

The Honorary Bat Girl program was introduced in 2009 to raise additional awareness and support for the annual "Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer" initiative celebrated on Mother's Day. In eight years, thousands of unique testimonials have been submitted and more than 3 million fan votes have been cast. Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer is a Major League Baseball initiative supported by MLB charitable partners, Stand Up To Cancer and Susan G. Komen. This initiative raises awareness about the breast cancer cause, while also raising funds to support breast cancer research.