DETROIT -- Alex and Kristina Avila's daughter arrived in the wee hours of Sunday morning, around 3:30 a.m. ET. By game time Sunday afternoon, 9 1/2 hours later, Alex Avila was at the ballpark and getting into uniform to sit on the bench against the Yankees.
Avila wasn't in the lineup, but he wanted to be back.
"I knew they weren't going to bring somebody up [from the Minor Leagues] for one day," Avila said. "I didn't want to leave skip short-handed."
The catcher's services were not needed. Considering he had next to no sleep, that's probably a good thing.
The couple welcomed Avery Noelle Avila to the world Sunday morning at Henry Ford Hospital in West Bloomfield, Mich., weighing six pounds, 15 ounces. There were no complications, but with labor induced, the process was longer than if Kristina was simply going to the hospital during contractions.
Alex Avila reported to the hospital shortly after the final out Saturday evening.
"It took a little bit longer than she would like, than we both would like," Avila said, "but we were both so anxious."
Both mother and daughter are doing fine, the catcher said. With an off-day Monday, the entire family is hoping for some rest.
Originally, the due date was next Wednesday, the day before the Tigers embark on a three-city West Coast trip. However, the couple agreed that inducing labor might be the only way to guarantee the catcher would be around for the birth.