Melanie Iglesias has become a fixture on MTV. Now on her fourth show for the brand, the girl you loved from Guy Code and its spinoffs is representing the female sports fan as co-host of MTV2's Major League Baseball co-production, Off The Bat From The MLB Fan Cave. We caught up with Melanie last week to discuss her career trajectory and how she's not just the pretty face on the Off The Bat roster.
"I think somebody likes me at MTV," she laughed. "I'm extremely grateful because I never thought I wold fall so in love with this career. It came out of nowhere and took me by surprise. When I found out that they wanted me to shoot the pilot for Guy Code, I was like, okay...Four months later, I got a call, saying the show got picked up and I'm going to be part of that cast. I couldn't believe it.
"I guess from there, they saw my fanbase growing and how the audience was really receptive to me," she continued. "They kind of just kept me working. And now I've fallen in love with hosting."
While there's no doubt that she's a beautiful woman - she first made her name as a Maxim model - it's important to note that Melanie is part of Off The Bat not for her looks, but because she knows what she's talking about. "I am a baseball fan," she told us. "My stepfather played minor league baseball for the Kansas City Royals Double-A team. I used to travel with him, go to all his games, and I loved it. I know how hard [the players] have worked and I know how hard the sport is.
"We kind of put all these athletes on a pedestal. We look at them like they're superhuman. But they're actually just like you and I," she added. "I've taken people's dogs to doggie day care. I got to take some people out to dinner and go out with them, see what they like. I feel like it's great for an MTV audience to see that, because then it can inspire them."
Melanie is aware that she faces some unfair assumptions because of her looks, but she's taken them all in stride. "I find that now that I've started on Off The Bat, people say she's just there because she's pretty, she doesn't know about baseball," she told us. "I just try to show my personality. I think that really comes across in the show. I think once people get a a chance to see me, they get a sense of my personality.
"I've really learned not to care what people say at all," she continued. "I have a great family, a wonderful boyfriend, a great career."
"I think that people should stop underestimating people in general, and stop judging people. That's the one thing I really can't stand," she reflected. "Nobody's perfect and I just think it's important to think about what you're posting on [social media]. You wouldn't say something like that to somebody's face."
Rather than waste her time on naysayers, her energy is focused on staying positive, and building an ever-expanding career. "There's a lot of things that I've done I can't believe that I've done. I've changed so much since I started out," Melanie told us. "I feel like I just keep evolving. I love working with talent, I love discovering new talent, I love being creative, and I love marketing. I've done a lot of my own marketing and my own PR."
And she's hoping to continue growing and testing the limits to see how much she can achieve, not just to benefit herself, but to help others as well. "I really love breaking the rules - just thinking outside the box and challenging myself," she continued. "I'm really passionate about using my influence for a great cause, so I'm always trying to brainstorm ways to do something positive. I don't feel successful unless I'm giving something back."
No wonder why MTV has made Melanie one of their busiest personalities. Yes, she's an attractive woman, but more importantly, she's smart, talented, unflinchingly honest, and fearlessly driven. Whether she's giving you dating truths on Guy Code or challenging MLB players to donut-eating contests on Off The Bat, there seems to be nothing she can't do, and she's thrilled to take it all on. "Right now," she told us, "I'm really happy."
Off The Bat From The MLB Fan Cave airs Tuesday nights at 11 PM on MTV2 (check your local listings for specific channel). For more on Melanie, you can follow her on Twitter (@MelanieIglesias).