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05/08/11 9:15 PM ET

Roberts wears pink spikes on Mother's Day

SAN DIEGO -- Ryan Roberts did not think wearing pink spikes was over the top. After all, how could you do too much to pay tribute to mothers, as well as raise awareness for the cause of breast cancer?

The D-backs joined the rest of Major League Baseball on Sunday by swinging pink bats and wearing pink wristbands on Mother's Day.

Roberts took things a step further with his pink spikes.

"This is my first year to be able to do it," Roberts said. "To be able to play a sport that gets attention and use it to recognize mothers, as well as an important cause, is real cool."

Roberts and his wife Kim have a young daughter, Hudsyn.

"For me, I think sometimes being a mom gets overlooked," he said. "I mean, man, that's a tough job. In the offseason, I get a taste of it for a few days -- and it's not easy."

Outfielder Justin Upton used a pink bat to double in the eighth inning. He eventually came around to score to pull the D-backs to within 4-3.

"It's for a great cause," Upton said. "For us, being on TV and being able to raise awareness of breast cancer is awesome. On top of that, we get to honor our mothers -- the people who brought us into this world -- and let them know how much we care about them."

Paterson's performance impresses Gibson

SAN DIEGO -- Kirk Gibson has walked a fine line with left-handed specialist Joe Paterson this year.

The D-backs' manager has tried to both develop the Rule 5 pick, while at the same time trying to make him a valuable piece in the bullpen.

So far, so good.

In his first 14 appearances this year, Paterson has yet to allow a run in 7 1/3 innings.

"He's done well," Gibson said. "We've tried to put him in situations where he can develop. There have been a couple of situations where it's been more game on the line."

Those are the kinds of situations where the rookie relishes getting a chance to pitch.

"It's exciting to go in [during] those situations," Paterson said. "I think any pitcher, that's really what they want. Just like a hitter, they want to hit .300 with some home runs -- and we want to go out and pitch and get holds and saves, and be able to help the team win."

If Paterson continues to have success, he will see more and more of those types of situations.

"He's throwing more strikes," Gibson said. "I think one of the things he tends to do is use his breaking ball a ton. I'd like to see him use all of his pitches. Keep people honest. He's coming along. His mentality is much better, feels more comfortable, feels like a part of the team. Hopefully, he won't get humbled."

Gibson not afraid to play Nady in left

SAN DIEGO -- When he was signed as a free agent this offseason, it was thought that Xavier Nady would get the bulk of the playing time for the D-backs in left field.

Heading into Sunday's series finale with the Padres, Nady had yet to appear in a game there.

Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said that the reason he has not used Nady in left has nothing to do with the fact that Nady, who has had two Tommy John surgeries, struggled with his throwing this spring.

"I'm not hesitant to use him out there at all," Gibson said.

With left fielder Gerardo Parra swinging a hot bat -- he entered Sunday's game hitting .277 -- and playing good defense, Gibson has been loath to sit him.

"I'm not going to take Parra out of there right now," Gibson said. "[Nady] is prepared to play left field, but the way it is right now, 'G' is playing good. Certainly in this outfield, defensively, he's a plus for us."

Nady made his ninth start of the year at first base on Sunday.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @dbackswriter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.