By Quincy Marks
Public Relations Manager
Alyssa Nakken made Major League Baseball history by signing a contract with the San Francisco Giants, becoming the first woman to be hired as a full-time coach for a professional baseball team. Nakken will officially be a full-time assistant coach – one of the 13 coaches on the Giants’ staff.
On Jan. 16, Nakken joined a small list of women who have coached for the MLB. In 2011, Justine Segal was hired by the Cleveland Indians to help with batting practice during their spring training. Later, the Oakland Athletics hired Segal for two weeks to coach their instructional league team. The New York Mets hired Jessica Medonza, a former ESPN analyst, to help with player evaluations in March 2019. In Nov. 2019, the Yankees hired Rachel Balkovec as a minor league hitting coach, making her the first full-time female hitting coach.
During her time as a student at Sacramento State, Nakken played softball and won many awards for her skill of the game. According to the Washington Post, she “was a four time Academic All American, three time all-Pacific Coast Softball Conference selection and the 2012 conference Scholar-Athlete of the year.” After her time at Sacramento State, Nakken earned her masters degree from the University of San Francisco. Nakken originally joined the Giants’ staff in 2014 as an intern. She later went on to lead several health and wellness programs for the team.
Due to the MLB rule that only seven coaches can be on the bench during a game, Nakken will not be present in the dugout. Nevertheless, Nakken will help coach Antoan Richardson with first base and outfield work before the games.
The San Francisco Giants start their 2020 season on Mar. 26 against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Until then, the 13 coaches, including Nakken, hope to turn the Giants into the next World Series Champions.
(Sources: Washington Post, Mercury News)