Updated Feb 13, 2012 - 3:04 pm
Valley woman a finalist for MLB Fan Cave
Trust me, you've got nothing on Christy McGaugh of Phoenix.
McGaugh is one of 50 finalists for the 2nd edition of the MLB Fan Cave, a 15,000 square foot space in New York's Greenwich Village which will serve as the nerve center for this experiment for the duration of the 2012 baseball season. The goal is to have the winners watch all 2,430 big league games while recording their experiences online through social media, blogs and video.
That's a lot of baseball, but that kind of viewing schedule is right in McGaugh's wheelhouse.
"I have three tvs, and once 4 o'clock comes, because that's usually the time the games start on the East coast, I just turn on the games on each channel," she said. "Even if I'm not actively watching, it's always in the background."
Most baseball fans will watch games at night after a long day at the office, but McGaugh's job as a freelance writer affords her the opportunity to extend those viewing hours.
"My very favorite treat is day games on getaway day, because I'll wake up and at 10 o'clock, there will be a game on while I'm having coffee, it's the best thing ever."
The format for this year's MLB Fan Cave is a little different than the inaugural project last year when one fan and a friend occupied the cave through the 2011 campaign. This season, a group of winners will initially begin the season in the Fan Cave, but that number will be reduced with help from fans. Think "Survivor", but with flat screen televisions and debates on the handling of bullpens.
"Fans will get to interact and vote people out of the cave, and at the end of the season there will be one fan left standing," McGaugh said.
Fan interaction was part of McGaugh's Saturday, as she drummed up support for her Fan Cave candidacy at D- backs' FanFest at Chase Field. McGaugh had a spot in the Digital Clubhouse and was afforded the chance to meet the fans and interact with players and coaches.
"I thought it was great of the D-backs to set me up," McGaugh said. "They were super-helpful. They were so accomodating and wonderful."
There were more than 22,000 applications submitted, but McGaugh is one of 50 finalists from around the country. From that pool, thirty will be picked to participate in a Spring Training "boot camp" before the final group is picked to relocate to New York City and actually be part of the Fan Cave.
McGaugh got creative with her audition, re-enacting popular films and adding her own dash of baseball flavor to them. One such re-enactment was a scene from the 1999 Academy Award-winning "American Beauty", in which Mena Suvari appeared in a bathtub filled with rose petals. Instead of flowers, McGaugh used baseball cards.
"It was a nightmare project," she joked. "I mean it looked beautiful, and from the get-go, that was the very first one that came into my head. I knew I wanted to do it, but it was so tedious.
"There was a time pressure lighting-wise, and trying to get the cards to stay -- every time I took a deep breath they'd fall."
McGaugh said she had plans to re-create a scene from Marilyn Monroe's 1953 classic "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes", but there was a prop snafu.
"The wig I got made look like Martha Washington instead of Marilyn Monroe, so that was a non-starter," she joked.
Why does McGaugh think she's the best candidate to be a part of this year's MLB Fan Cave?
"If people want someone who represents the regular fan, not a sports reporter or someone professional, but just someone who loves the game, goes to games and collects memorabilia, then they should vote for me," McGaugh said.
So, how can you show your support for one of the Valley's own? Go to MLBFanCave.com, check out McGaugh's audition video, vote often, and spread the word on social media. Voting is open until February 22.
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