After Mike Aviles' 4-year-old daughter was diagnosed with leukemia earlier this month, Cleveland Indians players and staff have shaved their heads in support.
When his daughter, Adriana, received the diagnosis the Indians placed Aviles on the family emergency medical leave list. Adriana initially received treatment at the Cleveland Clinic before returning home.
Aviles missed 10 days before returning to the field on May 18, and the Indians slowly started to shave their heads as a sign of support and camaraderie for his family. Before long, MLB.com's Jordan Bastian writes, the shaved heads were a common scene throughout the team's clubhouse.
“It means a lot for me,” Aviles said. “It goes without saying, everybody in here has families, and they know how it is. It‘s a tough time, but to know that my team, the coaching staff, everybody, is on my family‘s side and my little girl‘s side, it helps out a lot and makes me feel good.”
Aviles has appeared in 25 games this season, batting .310 with three home runs, six RBIs and an .876 OPS in 71 at-bats.
He said Adriana told him his shaved head looked “funny,” and that while she might not fully understand the team's gesture, the Indians made clear she has their support.
“She‘s going to, unfortunately, be losing her hair soon here to [chemotherapy],” second baseman Jason Kipnis told MLB.com. “So, we all kind of wanted to join in, and it started with a couple and then spread throughout the whole clubhouse.”
- Mike Fiammetta