San Francisco Giants Coach Alyssa Nakken on Building a 'Community' with Other Women in MLB

Alyssa Nakken was the first woman to be hired to a full-time coaching role in the MLB back in 2020

Alyssa Nakken is grateful for the small — but growing — community of women in Major League Baseball.

Nakken, who became the first woman to have a full-time coaching role in the MLB when she was promoted by the San Francisco Giants in Jan. 2020, appears in an upcoming special edition of MLB Network's MLB Tonight. The program, titled A Conversation: Women on the Field and hosted by Lauren Gardner and Amy Gutierrez, will highlight seven female coaches across MLB organizations.

In an exclusive clip ahead of the episode's release Tuesday night for International Women's Day, Nakken, 31, talks about connecting with her female colleagues.

"You're the first but you're not the last and it keeps building," says Gutierrez. "Now we've got nearly a dozen women in uniform and so many more on the field and in the press box and in the front office. Have you built a relationship with these other female coaches, do you feel the need to?"

In response, Nakken explains she feels "it's important to just build community and have those people that you trust and also those people that get it."

"There's a lot of people that sure you trust and can talk to about things but sometimes they just don't get it because they haven't been in those positions," says Nakken. "So it is nice to just kind of swap stories now that we're able to be together and actually go out to dinners and stuff. It's just been amazing to get to know some of the women that are in our minor league system right now and hear their stories and share a locker room with them and just be around more women in the game."

The other athletes featured in Tuesday's episode include Tampa Tarpons manager Rachel Balkovec; Oakland Athletics minor league instructor Veronica Alvarez; ACL Chicago Cubs hitting coach Rachel Folden; Arizona Diamondbacks minor league coach Ronnie Gajownik; Boston Red Sox minor league coach Bianca Smith; and Boston Red Sox development coach Katie Krall.

Speaking to ahead of the special episode, Nakken said she often recieves fan mail from other women who aspired to or dream of careers in sports.

Said Nakken, "There's some stories that you're reading about, 'I'm a 70-year-old woman and was not able to play sports. My granddaughter can see what she can do.' There's really no limit. That's where I obviously feel a huge responsibility of being out there and talking about it."

A Conversation: Women on the Field airs on MLB Network Tuesday at 7 p.m. EST.

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