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Mike Hazen’s sons will throw the ceremonial first pitch at Chase Field for Game 3

Assistant general manager Amiel Sawdaye, general manager Mike Hazen, and manager Torey Lovullo during batting practice at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Oct. 8, 2023.

Slightly more than a year following the heartbreaking loss of his wife, Nicole, to cancer, the four sons of Diamondbacks GM Mike Hazen will step onto the mound ahead of Game 3 of the NLDS to deliver the ceremonial first pitch at Chase Field.

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Hazen took the reins as the Diamondbacks’ general manager in the wake of the team’s 2016 season. Since then, he has orchestrated a remarkable transformation, turning a team once plagued by 100-loss seasons into a cohesive group of well-connected players who now stand on the brink of competing in the National League Championship Series.

However, Hazen’s journey with the Diamondbacks has been about more than just baseball.

In 2021, amid a season marked by 110 losses for the D-backs, Hazen found it increasingly difficult to balance his demanding general manager job during the lead-up to the trade deadline, while also providing unwavering support to his wife in her battle against brain cancer.

So, Hazen decided to take a physical leave of absence to spend more time with his wife.

Hazen told ESPN at the time, “She’s grinding along. But being realistic about the journey we’re on right now, knowing what my job demands, and knowing the most important thing to me, this is demanding a percentage of my time that’s starting to creep into the ability for me to do (my job) here physically.”

Tragically, Nicole passed away on August 4th, 2022.

Now, the Diamondbacks will pay tribute to her memory as Hazen’s four sons will take the field to throw out the first pitch before the Diamondbacks upcoming Game 3 against the Dodgers.

This heartwarming moment is a touching testament to the strength of Mike Hazen and his children after facing life’s hardships, along with how far they have come over the last five or so years.

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