Spring training baseball is for the fans

The poet Alexander Pope once wrote, “Hope springs eternal.” For Major League Baseball fans, that hope begins during spring training.

Spring training gives baseball fans the opportunity to see and meet their favorite major league players for autographs and selfies. During the regular season, many fans are disappointed when they are unable to get autographs or a photo taken with their favorite players, who are on a tight schedule in ballparks. (Players still find the time to sign a great deal of memorabilia.)

Yahoo News photographer Gordon Donovan visited several major league camps the first few weeks of Grapefruit League action and captured players interacting with fans.

And that hope? It can be snuffed out soon after the season begins at the end of March. (Yahoo News)

Photography by Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News

Photos: The Boys of Spring get ready for regular season »

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<p>Young fans seek autographs before a baseball game between the Miami Marlins and New York Mets at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Young fans wait for autographs

Young fans seek autographs before a baseball game between the Miami Marlins and New York Mets at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets catcher Kevin Plawecki poses for a photo with a fan after spring training workouts in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
A selfie with Kevin Plawecki

New York Mets catcher Kevin Plawecki poses for a photo with a fan after spring training workouts in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets player Tim Tebow signs for a veteran to be honored before a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Tebow takes time to sign

New York Mets player Tim Tebow signs for a veteran to be honored before a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Young fans of the New York Mets, perched on the shoulder of their parents, watch players work out during spring training in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Young fans watch on shoulders

Young fans of the New York Mets, perched on the shoulder of their parents, watch players work out during spring training in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Houston Astros player George Springer signs for fans before the baseball game against the New York Mets at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla. on Feb. 26, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Springer connects with fans

Houston Astros player George Springer signs for fans before the baseball game against the New York Mets at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla. on Feb. 26, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Fans watch the baseball game between the Minnesota Twins and the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla. on Feb. 28, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Fans watch the game on the lines

Fans watch the baseball game between the Minnesota Twins and the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla. on Feb. 28, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets manager Mickey Callaway signs for fans before a game against the Atlanta Braves at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
New manager Callaway signs

New York Mets manager Mickey Callaway signs for fans before a game against the Atlanta Braves at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets player T.J. Rivera poses for a photo with two fans during spring training workouts in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. The youngsters were given an opportunity to participate in drillls with Rivera. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
T.J. Rivera and fan club

New York Mets player T.J. Rivera poses for a photo with two fans during spring training workouts in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. The youngsters were given an opportunity to participate in drillls with Rivera. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Students from Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., pose with New York Mets captain David Wright and umpires before the baseball game against the Atlanta Braves at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
David Wright and Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students

Students from Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., pose with New York Mets captain David Wright and umpires before the baseball game against the Atlanta Braves at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., get the chance to meet players of the New York Mets before the baseball game against the Atlanta Braves at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Marjory Stoneman Douglas students honored

Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., get the chance to meet players of the New York Mets before the baseball game against the Atlanta Braves at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets outfielder Yoenis Céspedes signs for fans after workouts during spring training in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Céspedes signs through fence

New York Mets outfielder Yoenis Céspedes signs for fans after workouts during spring training in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Houston Astros pitcher Gerritt Cole signs for fans before the baseball game against the Minnesota Twins at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 28, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
New Astros player Cole signs for fans

Houston Astros pitcher Gerritt Cole signs for fans before the baseball game against the Minnesota Twins at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 28, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets fans line up along the fences to watch players during spring training workouts at the Mets Minor League Complex in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Peaking out from the fence

New York Mets fans line up along the fences to watch players during spring training workouts at the Mets Minor League Complex in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Members of the Astros fan patrol are on hand to throw T-shirts to fans before the baseball game between the Minnesota Twins and the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 28, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Shirts for the fans

Members of the Astros fan patrol are on hand to throw T-shirts to fans before the baseball game between the Minnesota Twins and the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 28, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets outfielder Brandon Nimmo signs for fans before the baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Finding Nimmo to sign

New York Mets outfielder Brandon Nimmo signs for fans before the baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Miami Marlins player Yadiel Rivera signs for fans before the baseball game against the New York Mets at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Rivera takes times to sign

Miami Marlins player Yadiel Rivera signs for fans before the baseball game against the New York Mets at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets pitcher Marcos Molina shakes the hand of a young fan before signing an autograph before the start of a baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Molina introduces himself

New York Mets pitcher Marcos Molina shakes the hand of a young fan before signing an autograph before the start of a baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets fans line a field for an autograph opportunity during spring training workouts at the Mets Minor League Complex in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
On the fence

New York Mets fans line a field for an autograph opportunity during spring training workouts at the Mets Minor League Complex in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets bullpen coach Dave Racaniello makes a young fan’s day by giving her a ball in the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Houston Astros at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 27, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Making a kid’s day

New York Mets bullpen coach Dave Racaniello makes a young fan’s day by giving her a ball in the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Houston Astros at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 27, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets minor leaguer and Florida native David Thompson signs for fans before the baseball game against the Miami Marlins at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium in Jupiter, Fla., March 3, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Florida native signs for fans

New York Mets minor leaguer and Florida native David Thompson signs for fans before the baseball game against the Miami Marlins at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium in Jupiter, Fla., March 3, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Fans watch the baseball game between the Minnesota Twins and the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 28, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Great day for baseball

Fans watch the baseball game between the Minnesota Twins and the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 28, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets outfielder Tim Tebow signs for fans during spring training in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Tim Tebow stops to sign

New York Mets outfielder Tim Tebow signs for fans during spring training in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom and outfielder Tim Tebow listen to a young fan before the baseball game against the Miami Marlins at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., March 1, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
DeGrom and Tebow meet and greet

New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom and outfielder Tim Tebow listen to a young fan before the baseball game against the Miami Marlins at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., March 1, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets minor leaguer Luis Guillorme signs for fans before the baseball game against the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 26, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Guillorme shows off quick hands

New York Mets minor leaguer Luis Guillorme signs for fans before the baseball game against the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 26, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets fans line up along the fences to watch players during spring training workouts at the Mets Minor League Complex in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Fans await chance for autograph

New York Mets fans line up along the fences to watch players during spring training workouts at the Mets Minor League Complex in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets player Todd Frazier signs for young fans before the baseball game against the Miami Marlins at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
The Toddfather signing for all

New York Mets player Todd Frazier signs for young fans before the baseball game against the Miami Marlins at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 25, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets minor league pitcher Tyler Bashlor signs for fans before the baseball game against the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 26, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Pregame signings

New York Mets minor league pitcher Tyler Bashlor signs for fans before the baseball game against the Houston Astros at the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 26, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets outfielder Yoenis Céspedes signs for fans after workouts at spring training in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Céspedes for the rest of us

New York Mets outfielder Yoenis Céspedes signs for fans after workouts at spring training in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Feb. 23, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>New York Mets minor leaguer and Florida native Peter Alonso (74) signs autographs for fans before the baseball game against the Miami Marlins at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium in Jupiter, Fl., March 3, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Peter Alonso signs autographs for youngsters

New York Mets minor leaguer and Florida native Peter Alonso (74) signs autographs for fans before the baseball game against the Miami Marlins at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium in Jupiter, Fl., March 3, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

<p>Miami Marlins prospect Brian Anderson signs autographs for fans before the baseball game against the New York Mets at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium in Jupiter, Fl., March 3, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News) </p>
Anderson signs ball and baseball cards

Miami Marlins prospect Brian Anderson signs autographs for fans before the baseball game against the New York Mets at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium in Jupiter, Fl., March 3, 2018. (Photo: Gordon Donovan/Yahoo News)

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