Best 2020 SF Giants Moments:
1. Coach Alyssa Nakken
As great as many Giants performances were this season, the year, in particular, has little reason to standout. They did not finish with a .500 record, reach the playoffs, or set any all-time season records. Even if they had though, Alyssa Nakken becoming the first woman on an MLB coaching staff would have been one of the most significant moments of their season.
Nakken grew up in Woodland, California, just 15 miles outside of Sacramento. At Woodland High School, she played softball, volleyball, and basketball and would be recruited to play softball at Sacramento State University. She starred as the Hornets’ first baseman, posting a .304 career batting average, and earning All-Pacific Coast Conference honors in each of her four years.
Nakken began working in the Giants baseball operations department as an intern back in 2014, where she focused on developing and refining health and wellness programs. She soon earned a master’s degree from the University of San Francisco in sports management while continuing to work for the organization. In January, she was hired as an assistant coach on manager Gabe Kapler’s staff. While she was not one of the seven coaches in the Giants dugout during most games, she served as the team’s first-base coach in an exhibition game against the Oakland Athletics.
While the hiring of a woman to a big-league coaching staff was long overdue, Nakken will go down in history as the first. Throughout the rest of the year, many other women were hired to prominent positions around the league. This offseason, Kim Ng was hired by the Miami Marlins and became the first woman and person of East-Asian descent to become a general manager of an MLB team. Hopefully, these hirings represent a shift that will see people from diverse backgrounds continue to receive well-earned opportunities in more prominent positions.
The entire Around the Foghorn team is incredibly thankful for all the support we have received this year. We hope everyone has a fun, socially distanced, New Year’s Eve. May we all raise a glass to a better year ahead.