From SABR member Michael Clair at MLB’s Cut Four on June 29, 2016:
The world of independent baseball is filled with unique promotions and even stranger giveaways. For the Sonoma Stompers of the Pacific Association, they’re a bit more forward-thinking than a simple bobblehead or cat video festival, though. Last year they became the first team to cede control to a couple of sabermetrically inclined baseball writers and were the first team to have an openly gay professional player on their roster.
While many teams host LGBTQ pride nights, the Stompers celebrated theirs by moving Sean Conroy from the bullpen to the rotation — his teammates wearing rainbow-colored socks and armbands in support.
Now they’ll be the first professional team to have women on the field since Toni Stone, Mamie “Peanut” Johnson and Constance Morgan played in the Negro Leagues back in the 1950s.
On Friday, July 1, when the Stompers take on the San Rafael Pacifics, 17-year-old Kelsie Whitmore will start in left field while 25-year-old Stacy Piagno will take the mound, armed with a knuckle-curve, slider and fastball.
Read the full article here: http://m.mlb.com/cutfour/2016/06/29/186947558/sonoma-stompers-sign-two-women
Originally published: June 29, 2016. Last Updated: June 29, 2016.