Hailey Dawson Throws Out Pitch at 30th MLB Stadium

Eight-Year-Old Las Vegas Girl Talks to 'The Chet Buchanan Show" About Fulfilling Her Dream

September 14, 2018
Hailey Dawson

Story by Nicole Cormier

Hailey Dawson, beloved Valley 8-year-old, is taking her custom-built 3D printed prosthetic hand to Anaheim this weekend to conclude her ballpark tour, throwing the first pitch at all 30 U.S. Major League Baseball stadiums.

What started as an eager request to throw out the ceremonial first pitch for the family’s favorite team, the Baltimore Orioles in 2015, quickly turned into a lofty goal of hitting each and every ballpark in the United States. Along her way, Hailey also met former President Barack Obama while he was in the White House, threw the first pitch in Game 4 of the 2017 World Series, and dropped the puck during the Golden Knights’ historic inaugural season.

Ahead of Hailey’s 30th pitch this Sunday, September 16 at Anaheim’s Angel Stadium, where the Los Angeles Angels and Seattle Mariners will match up, she and her mom, Yong stopped by 98.5 KLUC’s The Chet Buchanan Show.

Wearing her UNLV built Golden Knights hand. the young guest shouted “Yes!” when asked if she was excited for her final first pitch. Although she had the same response for whether she was excited for the journey to be over, she dialed back her enthusiasm. 

After touring 29 ballparks, Yong claims that Hailey’s favorite moments were at Camden Yards where she started this journey three years ago. While the family enjoyed the modern amenities of newer parks like Atlanta’s SunTrust Park, they equally loved the historic charm of older fields like Boston’s Fenway Park and Chicago’s Wrigley Field. When Chet says that he would eat a fistful of grass if he ever got on the field at Safeco in Seattle, Yong discloses that Hailey considered taking home some Wrigley field grass as a souvenir.  “Everyone was watching her so she didn’t want to get caught,” Yong says.

Although Hailey was treated very well by the teams and fans alike throughout her journey, Yong fondly remembers that “It wasn’t the team, it was the individual players,” that made them feel special. One such moment was a trip to Derek Jeter’s box where they all met the famed former player and now executive. 

As the journey comes to a close, there isn’t a shortage of opportunities for the young baseball fan, recently Hailey starred in an Amazon commercial which is set to air on October 2. When pressed whether they will continue their tour, potentially with the NHL, Yong and Hailey both shake their heads.

“We’re kinda glad it’s almost over.” Yong says, “But it’s bitter sweet. We’ll probably cry when it’s over.”