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Giants Hire First Female Coach

Photo Credit http://www.hornetsports.com/sports/sball/2019-20/releases/20200116s72sld

From playing to taking on a much bigger challenge given the way Professional sports and adding Women to their teams and not just in the front office, but also giving them a hands-on approach.

Now we are hearing that former Sacramento State player (2009-2012) Alyssa Nakken (29) is making Major League Baseball history by becoming the first full-time female coach in the league.

On Jan. 16, San Francisco Giants manager Gabe Kapler rounded out his coaching staff by hiring Nakken and Mark Hallberg as team assistants to help run the team

It’s interesting to note that she was a three-time all-conference first baseman at Sacramento State and a four-time Academic All-American and was not the only woman considered for this role. 

It’s reported by MLB.com, the Giants also interviewed Rachel Balkovec, but was eventually hired by the Yankees and will serve as a Minor League hitting coach.

Following her graduation from Sacramento State she went on to earn her Master’s degree in sports management from the University of San Francisco. 

It wasn’t until 2014 that she joined the Giants, first as an intern, where she supervised the organization’s health and wellness initiatives.

Kapler mentioned in a press release that the new roles for both Nakken and Hallberg “will now focus their talents on helping to build a winning culture in the clubhouse.”

He continued to mention “In every organization, environment affects performance, and baseball clubhouses are no different and that’s why in addition to assisting the rest of the coaching staff on the field, Mark and Alyssa will focus on fostering a clubhouse culture that promotes high performance through, among other attributes, a deep sense of collaboration and team.”

The hiring of Nakken is what many call historic and in the right direction for the MLB, but according to some they still have a long way to go in terms of creating an equal playing field for women. 

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According to the 2019 Racial and Gender Report Card released by the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sports, the MLB received a C grade for gender diversity, placing it below the NFL and NBA, who received a C+ and B grade, respectively. In the MLB, women make up just 30% of the organization’s professional staff.

Renee Tirado, MLB’s former Chief Diversity Officer mentioned to NPR back in 2019 she recognizes the league’s need for improvement mentioning “Look, I think there’s no sugar-coating this and there’s a lot to do.”

We wish her all the best moving forward with her new position.