Alyssa Nakken has become the MLB’s first-ever female full-time coach as she is announced the new assistant coach at San Francisco Giants.
Major League Baseball confirmed that Nakken’s appointment was the first time a woman had been named a full-time member of an MLB team’s coaching side after new head coach Gabe Kapler revealed his coaching team.
Nakken has been at the Giants since 2014 when she joined as an intern working in baseball operations after playing softball for Sacramento State.
According to the Giants Nakken will be responsible for “developing, producing and directing a number of the organization’s health and wellness initiatives and events” and will work alongside Mark Hallberg.
Speaking following the announcement, Kapler said: “Simply, I think she’s going to be a great coach,” Kapler said. “Merit and the ability to be a great coach trumps all.”
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“Alyssa and Mark are highly respected members of the organization and I’m delighted that they will now focus their talents on helping to build a winning culture in the clubhouse.”
Not welcomed by all
Former Giants player Aubrey Huff could not hold back his disdain for the decision, however, and tweeted his criticism of Kapler’s appointment.
Huff tweeted that he “couldn’t imagine taking baseball instruction from an ex female softball player”
This is not the first time Huff has found himself in a muddle on Twitter and earlier this month he received criticism for advocating the kidnapping and enslaving of Iranian women.
It is worth noting here that Aubrey Huff’s Twitter bio contains the hashtag #Trump2020…
It is a shame that Nakken’s landmark moment has been overshadowed by Huff’s uneducated comments, but it is worth recognising his comments are symptomatic of the work left to be done in women’s sport. Women do not yet receive the acknowledgement they deserve for the skills and talent they bring to every sport.
There is still a long way for us to go before women are going to be taken seriously in sports that are traditionally considered male spaces. People like Huff will continue to exist but let’s watch as Nakken takes on this role and proves his opinion is defunct.