Alyssa Nakken Hired by Giants as 1st Full-Time Female Coach in MLB History

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistJanuary 16, 2020

DETROIT, MI - JULY 04:  A detailed view of the special red, white and blue hat worn by San Francisco Giants players and coaches to honor Independence Day during the Fourth of July game against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park on July 4, 2017 in Detroit, Michigan. The Tigers defeated the Giants 5-3.  (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
Mark Cunningham/Getty Images

The San Francisco Giants announced the hiring of Alyssa Nakken as a Major League assistant coach on Thursday. 

SFGiants @SFGiants

@ARichardson242 #SFGiants complete 2020 Major League Coaching Staff with the additions of Mark Hallberg and Alyssa Nakken. https://t.co/3mNkoVA0De

According to Kerry Crowley of the Bay Area News Group, "The hiring of Nakken, a former Sacramento State softball player, is historic as she will be the first female coach in Giants history and the first full-time female coach in the majors."

Kelli Johnson @KJohnsonNBCS

Excited to see Alyssa Nakken added to the @SFGiants coaching staff. She's been w/ the organization the last 2 years & is a former softball player at Sac State. Her focus will be in the clubhouse & helping create a strong culture. Good to see more women get opportunities in @MLB👏🏼

Giants manager Gabe Kapler said of Thursday's hirings that "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," per Mark W. Sanchez of KNBR. 

Nakken earned All-Conference honors three times as a first baseman for Sacramento State. As an intern with the Giants, her "roles ... included developing, producing and directing a number of the organization's health and wellness initiatives and events, including coordinating the Giant Race series," per Crowley. 

Nakken joins a small but growing list of women in coaching positions around baseball. The New York Yankees hired Rachel Balkovec to serve as minor league hitting coach in November, while Rachel Folden was hired by the Chicago Cubs later that month as lead hitting lab tech for the team's Arizona Rookie League team. 

Nakken's addition rounds out the staff of Kapler, who was hired in November as manager to replace Bruce Bochy, who had spent the previous 13 seasons in San Francisco. Kapler spent the previous two years as the manager of the Philadelphia Phillies, going 161-163 in that time.