Tampa Bay Sports Day

Miss America, Fan Cave Help Kick Off A Classic Baseball Season

Before Mallory Hytes Hagan became Miss America 2013, she was Miss New York, and called Brooklyn “home.” But don’t confuse Hagan with others who have hailed from The Empire State to take the crown, like Bess Myerson or even Vanessa Williams. Hagan is Alabama born and bred who spent a few years in and around The Apple while she sought fame and fortune as a student. It was enough to get her the New York title and now Miss America, and got her a special appearance this week at the MLB Fan Cave to help kick off the World Baseball Classic.

Hagan, a “huge baseball fan,” has made a stop or two at the nearby Barclays Center to root for her adopted borough partners-in-crime the Brooklyn Nets, but her baseball team of choice is not the once-beloved Dodgers or even their National League cousins in Flushing, the Mets. It is, at least when she is in the Apple, the Yankees, who she said she adopted during a recent Subway Series (the regular season kind, not the Giants-Dodgers or even Mets-Yankees 2000 World Series clash).

Hagan, who admitted to coming to support New York teams only since her recent arrival in the Apple, will be back down South for opening day, cheering for her even more beloved Braves (Chipper Jones was a favorite growing up), and singing “God Bless America” for Atlanta on Opening Day. Regardless of her allegiances, Hagan was in the Fan Cave to support some others whose loyalty, at least to baseball, was very clear.

“Nothing brings people together like sport, and especially like baseball,” said Hagan, equipped with her traveling tiara. “I couldn’t be more excited to welcome the Dwellers to the United States, and more importantly welcome them to New York.”

Those Dwellers, Nic Connell (Australia), Pedro Carvalho (Brazil), Andrews (Canada), Yuning (Vivia) Wang (China), Chi-En (Adam) Wang (Chinese Taipei), Damaso Rosales (Cuba), Juan Sarmiento (Dominican Republic), Periluigi Mandoi (Italy), Kozo (Toshi) Sasa (Japan), Soo Yeon Seo (Korea), Mariana Patraca Dibildox (Mexico), Julia Bol (The Netherlands), Raul Rivera (Puerto Rico), Josep Juaneda Josa (Spain), Kelsey Shea (USA) and Tibaldo Hernandez (Venezuela) are the 16 fans selected to represent their respective countries playing in the WBC.  Each will spend all their waking hours on Broadway at the Fan Cave, rooting on their respective country. They stay as long as their home nation is alive in the Tournament, which begins Friday night with Australia-Chinese Taipei at 11:30 ET. MLB Network will televise the entire series this year for the first time.

While Hagan did not say whether she would make a cameo to the fan Cave during the tournament to root on her newfound friends in baseball, she certainly lent some good American support to “The National Pastime” and its global supporters, who came from five continents to help get the WBC’s third edition started. No switching allegiances for those fans, that’s for sure.