Hagan’s college season halted; hopes for restart with Starfires

WESTFIELD – Former Westfield High School ace Jimmy Hagan (2016-19) was preparing to make his collegiate baseball debut for Division 1 school Quinnipiac University when the sports world came to a dramatic halt one month ago.
Hagan and his fellow Bobcat teammates were in the midst of spring training, having wrapped up a two-game set in Georgia and heading down to Tallahassee, Florida on a bus to take on Florida A&M when news of the coronavirus outbreak forced the cancellation of the season.
“It was terrible sitting on the bus waiting and waiting to see if we had a chance to play again,” Hagan said. “Once we heard the news officially, a lot of the older guys broke down. Finding out their season and career was over, it got pretty emotional. It was tough to sit through. I felt bad for the older kids who put three to four years into the program and it just ended right there.”
After receiving the official word that their season had been canceled, the team bus was re-routed to Orlando, Florida for an overnight stay. The next day, the team flew home.
Since that time, Hagan has been in constant contact with his strength coach from Quinnipiac. The Bobcats pitcher has adopted a weight-lifting program, a cardio regimen, and plays catch with his Dad.
“I need to keep my body in shape and stay strong,” Hagan said.
While his first true college season has been put on hold, a redshirt year of sorts, Hagan will still get his chance to shine this year for the Westfield Starfires, assuming the season begins as planned.
“Our GM emailed us two weeks and told us that plans are to continue as normal, that we will start the season on time at the end of May,” Hagan said. “We were told to stay ready, be prepared.”
“It should be fun to play with kids from all over the country,” he added. “It should be a great experience.”
Once the Futures Collegiate Baseball League season does finally begin, Hagan will have the chance to further a proud tradition of ballplayers in his family line.
Jimmy’s grandfather, Bud, pitched for the Brooklyn Dodgers Double-A organization from 1946-49. Jimmy’s father, Jim, was also a high school pitcher and shortstop who went on to play soccer at Assumption College.

Westfield pitcher Jim Hagan is congratulated by teammates after the Bombers shut out the West Springfield Terriers 2-0 in the 2019 West D1 semifinals at Westfield State University’s Bud and Jim Hagan Field. (THE WESTFIELD NEWS FILE PHOTO)

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