Pirates select honorary bat girl for Mother's Day

PITTSBURGH -- Maria Heddleston has been selected as the Pirates' honorary bat girl for upcoming Mother's Day celebrations at PNC Park.

The selection of honorary bat girls for all 30 Major League clubs, begun in 2009 to further raise awareness of MLB's "Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer" program, is through fan voting.

Additionally, input is given by a panel of five judges, which included the Pirates' Andrew McCutchen.

During MLB's annual Mother's Day national day of recognition, honorary bat girls will take part in pregame activities, be honored during an on-field ceremony, and will receive pink MLB merchandise and two tickets to the game.

The Bucs will be in New York on the actual Mother's Day, this Sunday. Like other clubs away on that day, the Pirates will designate another home game later in May to recognize Marie.

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.