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Williams' colorful gloves began as nod to mom

Phillies pitcher wears pink for breast cancer awareness, but has other hues as well
MLB.com @ToddZolecki

PHILADELPHIA -- Phillies right-hander Jerome Williams is not pitching on Mother's Day, but he promises something special for the occasion.

"It's a cool tribute," Williams said. "I've got a couple things. You'll see it. Trust me."

PHILADELPHIA -- Phillies right-hander Jerome Williams is not pitching on Mother's Day, but he promises something special for the occasion.

"It's a cool tribute," Williams said. "I've got a couple things. You'll see it. Trust me."

Phils fans certainly have seen Williams pitching with a pink glove this season. He wears the glove to honor his mother, Deborah, who died of breast cancer in 2001. But Williams also has green, blue, purple and gold gloves. Green represents liver cancer, blue represents prostate cancer, gold represents childhood cancer and purple represents pancreatic cancer.

Williams has not yet worn the other gloves in a game, but it could be coming.

"It's random," he said. "It could be a random day when I decide to use one."

Williams came up with the idea for the colored gloves in the offseason with Wayne Lee, who works for Williams' glove manufacturer. Lee asked Williams which colors he wanted, so Williams asked friends about any forms of cancer that affected them.

Williams could have quietly donated money to the American Cancer Society, but the fact people have asked him about the gloves is exactly why he did it.

:: Mother's Day 2015 ::

"We're in the spotlight on the field and on TV," Williams said. "I could donate money, but it doesn't show any type of awareness. Going out there and using a different glove and having people wonder why and then when I say why, the people that have been affected by it are looking at it like, 'That's kind of cool. We appreciate that.' That's the whole thing behind it. I want people to appreciate what I'm doing, because I'm doing this from my heart. Everybody knows the story about my mother, but I want to branch out to other cancers, because we don't look at them like breast cancer and prostate cancer."

Williams said Mother's Day remains an important day for him.

"It's almost like a holiday for me," he said. "Like a really big holiday for me. It's a celebration for mothers out there. But for me, it's a celebration of my mother. That day has been very tough on me over the years. You see mothers coming in and throwing out first pitches and their sons are catching and things like that. I kind of get worked up."

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone. Follow him on Twitter.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Philadelphia Phillies, Jerome Williams