Alyssa Nakken becomes the first female coach in history

Alyssa Nakken set another milestone Tuesday night, becoming the first woman to coach on the field in a Major League game during the Giants’ 13-2 victory over the Padres at Oracle Park. Nakken took over as the Giants’ first-base coach in the top of the third inning when crew chief Greg Gibson dismissed Antoan Richardson from the game due to a disagreement with Padres third-base coach Mike Shildt. Nakken stated that bench coach Kai Correa approached her in the batting cages and informed her that she would be taking the place of Richardson. Thus, she made her on-field coaching debut with the Giants, who hired the 31-year-old in January 2020 as an assistant coach.

“It felt surreal,” infielder Mauricio Dubón of the Giants remarked. “It was quite nice since she was one of us out there.”

The Giants have been grooming Nakken for an on-field coaching job for some time, as she previously served as the club’s first-base coach during an exhibition game versus the A’s two years ago at the Coliseum. “Our first-base coach was ejected,” Nakken explained. “I’ve spent the previous few years preparing as a first-base coach. Because I work alongside Antoan, I stepped into the role for which I was employed.”


While Nakken downplayed the accomplishment, players on both sides appeared to recognize its significance. When Nakken returned to the dugout in the bottom of the third, she received a celebratory handshake from Padres first baseman Eric Hosmer and a hearty embrace from Giants catcher Curt Casali.


“All I did was introduce myself and congratulate her,” Hosmer said. “Obviously, this is a tremendous occasion for her, as well as a significant time for the game. It’s an accomplishment she should be quite proud of.”



Written by Doug McKain

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