From Hillel Kuttler at the Jewish Baseball Museum on May 9, 2016, with SABR member Justine Siegal:
People scoffed at Justine Siegal when she said she wanted a career in baseball.
“The person I told my dream to laughed at me: my coach from the camp I was at,” Siegal said. “He said that a man would never listen to a woman on the baseball field. … I felt sick to my stomach.”
It turns out that Siegal has had the last laugh.
Beginning in 2008 at Springfield College, in Massachusetts, Siegal, who grew up going to Cleveland Indians games with her grandfather, worked as an assistant coach for the men’s baseball team. In 2009, she became a coach with the Brockton (Mass.) Rox, a men’s independent summer-league club. In 2011, she pitched batting practice for the Indians, something she would do for five more major-league teams. In autumn 2015, she coached for the Oakland Athletics’ club in the Arizona Instructional League. She’s considered to be the first female to work in each of the four roles.
Throughout, Siegal has encouraged females to play baseball and pursue careers in the sport. She founded a nonprofit organization, Baseball for All, which “empowers, educates, and creates opportunities for girls to be in baseball.”
Siegal shared her incredible story in this special Q/A.
Originally published: May 9, 2016. Last Updated: May 9, 2016.