Watch highlights from the Through the Lens of Baseball panel at the 2023 SABR/IWBC Women in Baseball Conference

At the fifth annual SABR/IWBC Women in Baseball Conference on September 30, 2023, the Through the Lens of Baseball panel included panelists Donna Muscarella, Tracy Greer, Margaret Lawrence, and Jessica Kleinschmidt, and moderator Leslie Heaphy.

Greer is a deputy senior content editor for the Chicago Tribune with more than two decades of experience in news and sports journalism. Kleinschmidt is a multimedia journalist with the Oakland A’s, where she hosts a live pregame and postgame A’s Cast radio show. Lawrence is a Chicago-based artist who attended the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Muscarella is a SABR member, fourth-generation baseball enthusiast, and visual artist whose work includes photography and mixed media projects. Heaphy is SABR’s Vice President and chair of the Women in Baseball Committee since 1995.

Here are some highlights:

On working in baseball

  • Muscarella: “I love baseball. I eat, breathe, sleep baseball. I also adore photography. So it was really a perfect marriage for me to unite the two. Once I got a camera that was good enough to capture the players from where I was sitting, I was like, ‘Oh, let’s try to get a shot of all my favorite guys.’ … Being able to capture things like [Aaron Judge’s first home run] from a personal perspective was phenomenal. But then you take it to another level, and once I got brave enough to start sharing my photography, it became a way to bond with people over the love of the game or maybe to get some people who weren’t so interested … to have a level of joy for the game.”
  • Greer: “I joined AWSM (Association for Women in Sports Media) when I was in college and it was one of the best things I could have done for my career because it put me in touch with a network of women who were working in sports. And I didn’t see anyone growing up (who was) doing that. Over the years, it’s kind of the strength of that collective. You know, this is a hard, hard business to work in as a woman. And the strength of that collective gives me the motivation to keep going even when it gets really hard.”

On working around the schedules of major-league players

  • Kleinschmidt: “Seth Brown, we have this funny inside joke that every time I need him for a quote, he’s just never around or it’s right in between stuff. I’ve been covering that man for five years and I have yet to have a sit-down with him. … And that’s the beauty of it too, you know, there’s Aledmys Díaz, Tony Kemp … a lot of guys are just going to be available for a quote no matter what. You see some of the guys get better with the media over time.”

On players using social media to curate their voices

  • Greer: “Regardless of the platform, there’s always going to be a need for editors, producers, photographers, for people behind the scenes. All of these athletes with their social media accounts … it’s great to have the voice of the athletes, but they are not doing it alone. I’ve noticed with some younger major league baseball players, there’s a formula to their social media. It’s the same types of photos, the same types of posts. Every three photos, you see the dog, you see the wife or the girlfriend, or the babies. If you look at it across multiple players, you can really see a pattern. I don’t know if that comes from the team (or) from a specific agency or representation that the player is with. It’s not this 24-year-old man with his phone in his pocket. He’s got a Finsta that his friends and family are on, but that public image is very curated. Even though the platform is changing, the messaging is changing, there’s still a need for people behind the scenes.”

Transcription assistance by Alyssa Polczynski.

For more coverage of the 2023 SABR/IWBC Women in Baseball Conference, visit

Originally published: October 8, 2023. Last Updated: October 8, 2023.