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Desmond donates $29K to charity

Veteran pledged $1,000 for every RBI, run scored in May; several Rockies relievers progressing
MLB.com

DENVER -- On May 6, Ian Desmond crushed two home runs against the Mets -- the first to cut the Rockies' deficit to one, and the other to give Colorado a 3-2 win.

Desmond was pumped up after his big day at the plate for two reasons: it helped lead the Rockies to a win, and it resulted in more money that he would give to the Children's Tumor Foundation at the end of May.

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DENVER -- On May 6, Ian Desmond crushed two home runs against the Mets -- the first to cut the Rockies' deficit to one, and the other to give Colorado a 3-2 win.

Desmond was pumped up after his big day at the plate for two reasons: it helped lead the Rockies to a win, and it resulted in more money that he would give to the Children's Tumor Foundation at the end of May.

View Full Game Coverage

"I was like, 'Sweet, let's keep it going,'" Desmond said on Saturday. "It's cool for the Children's Tumor Foundation to tally off every time I score a run, because it's not only helping them, but also the team."

Desmond and his family pledged $1,000 for every RBI and run scored in the month of May. And after scoring 14 times and driving in 15 runs last month, Desmond presented a $29,000 check to the Children's Tumor Foundation in a pregame ceremony on Saturday at Coors Field.

The month of May is Neurofibromatosis (NF) Awareness Month. NF is a genetic disorder that causes tumors to form on nerve tissue anywhere in the nervous system, including the brain, spinal cord and nerves. About one in 3,000-4,000 people have the disorder. The Children's Tumor Foundation's mission is to drive research, expand knowledge of and advance care for the NF community.

Desmond first became informed about NF in 2012, when he met then 16-year-old Ethan Brown on Twitter. Brown had been diagnosed with NF and was requesting prayers for an upcoming brain surgery. Desmond reached out and told Brown he'd pray for him, and a friendship was born.

"I didn't know it would it would lead to the relationship we've had," Desmond said. "I probably talk to him more than I talk to anyone."

Last year, Desmond gave $16,000 to the foundation in May, and he hopes to continue making donations in the future. Through his outreach, he has met more people affected by NF than he thought he would.

"When I'm in stadiums around the country and people are like, 'Hey, I've got NF,' or, 'Thanks for what you do for NF,' you realize that one in 3,000 is much more common than you think," Desmond said. "And the community, that's what's great about them -- they have so much hope. You're just pushing on with hope that something will come through."

Relievers working their way back
Righty Adam Ottavino, placed on the 10-day disabled list Monday with a left oblique strain, played catch Saturday -- his first throwing session since the injury. Ottavino said he does not have a timetable for his return.

Righty Carlos Estevez, a valuable late reliever last September, and lefty Zac Rosscup, who didn't give up a hit in 15 lefty-on-lefty at-bats last year, threw flat-ground sessions, with the hope of throwing off of a mound soon. Estevez suffered a sprained ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow in April, and Rosscup underwent extensive treatment for a wart on his left middle finger. Estevez was planning to play catch at 120 feet and Rosscup was going to test his slider -- a pitch his finger's condition had not let him throw until recently.

Pinch me
Outfielder Noel Cuevas entered Saturday batting .308 in 25 games since being called up from Triple-A Albuquerque, but more importantly, he has been a cog in a dramatically more productive bench.

Video: CIN@COL: Cuevas hits go-ahead RBI triple in the 6th

Cuevas was 6-for-17 as a pinch-hitter, including Friday night's eighth-inning line-drive single off Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen. The Rockies' bench was 3-for-36 (.083) before Cuevas' arrival, while it is 14-for-50 (.280) since.

After a run of playing time, outfielder David Dahl contributed as a pinch-hitter before suffering a broken right foot Wednesday, and infielder Ryan McMahon -- who had regular starts while DJ LeMahieu was nursing a left thumb injury -- has put together solid at-bats off the bench this week. Veterans Carlos Gonzalez and Gerardo Parra had also regularly been taking pinch-hit at-bats prior to Dahl's injury.

Anne Rogers is a reporter for MLB.com based in Denver.

Colorado Rockies, Ian Desmond