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Gallardo helping rival raise cancer awareness

Gallardo helping rival raise cancer awareness

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Their teams may be big rivals, but Brewers starter Yovani Gallardo is happily lending a hand to Cardinals reliever Jason Motte.

Gallardo has been sporting one of Motte's "K cancer" T-shirts in Brewers colors, part of a league-wide initiative to raise money for charity with the hope of someday striking out the disease. For Gallardo, the effort has special significance because his mother died of cancer in November 2012.

"Jason reached out to my agent and myself knowing the background," Gallardo said. "The things that he's doing for different charities, I think it goes a long way. Anything I can do to help with something like that, I'm up for it."

The website 108stitches.com went live on March 17, with 108 Stitches showcasing the "Strike Out Cancer" tees in each team's colors. Each is promoted by a different player who agreed to join Motte in a partnership that will benefit multiple charities. Each participating player has chosen a charity that will benefit from the T-shirts sales, and for each shirt sold, $5 will go to the Jason Motte Foundation and $5 to a charity of that player's choice. A full list of recipient charities will be listed on the 108 Stitches website soon, along with a photo of each player rep in his team-colored shirt.

"At the end of the day, it's about reaching people," Motte said. "Baseball is great and everything, but there are other really important things going on out there that affect a lot of people. Wearing these T-shirts shows people that they're not alone. They're not sitting there doing chemo by themselves where no one cares. People do care, whether it's friends, family or baseball players. There are people who this has touched and this has affected. This is something we're trying to do to get the word out there and try to raise money to help."

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brew Beat, and follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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