Diamondbacks fans have a ball at Fan Fest

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PHOENIX -- Chase Field played host to a large collection of baseball fans this weekend as the ninth annual SUBWAY D-Backs Fan Fest took place in downtown Phoenix.

Saturday's much anticipated gathering included various activities and events that were planned to allow fans to interact with their team.

It also provided a rewarding experience for the players to get to know their biggest supporters.

“Seeing the support is huge for us,” said outfielder Adam Eaton. “Without the fans we’re nothing.”

Eaton was among a number of current and former Diamondbacks players at the event.

“It’s really a good opportunity for our fans to get to know us…and where we come from and how we act,” said Eaton. “I think they respect the team more and respect you more as a player if they know more about you than just a hat out there on the field.”

One fan literally got a hat from the field.

“What brings me here today is the chance to purchase this awesome Joe Patterson game used hat,” said one eager fan. “His sweat was in there.”

David Evans wanted the chance to get his photo of Brandon Webb signed, but he was also there to enjoy the experience.

“It’s pretty cool to be able to get close to the players that you see play every day…to interact with them, get their autograph, take a picture...and to be able to talk with them about baseball,” said Evans.

Others got to come out for an even bigger cause by participating in the first ever D-Backs Race Against Cancer presented by the University of Arizona Cancer Center at St. Joseph’s and the University of Arizona College of Medicine Phoenix.

“It was pretty fun,” said Ashley Galvan, who ran the 5k race. “I’ve never been to the stadium before so it was my first time here.”