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Rachel Balkovec to be first female MiLB manager, AP sources say

She's set to manage the Tampa Tarpons, the Low A minor league team in the New York Yankees organization.

TAMPA, Fla. — The New York Yankees are promoting Rachel Balkovec to manager at Low A Tampa, making her the first woman to skipper a team affiliated with Major League Baseball, according to two people familiar with the move. 

The people spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the club hadn’t announced the promotion. 

The 34-year-old Balkovec joined the Yankees organization as a minor league hitting coach in 2019. The AP says she was the first woman to be named to that position full-time in affiliated baseball. 

She got her first job in pro baseball with the St. Louis Cardinals as a minor league strength and conditioning coach in 2012.

“I view my path as an advantage,” she told The Associated Press in 2019. “I had to do probably much more than maybe a male counterpart, but I like that because I’m so much more prepared for the challenges that I might encounter.” 

The news was first reported in The Athletic

CBS Sports reports Balkovec spent last season coaching in the Florida Complex League and was later rewarded with a spot on the Futures Game, which is an annual staple at the MLB All-Star game. 

The Tampa Tarpons are the Single-A affiliate of the New York Yankees and play at the iconic George M. Steinbrenner Field. The location also serves as the Yankees' spring training site. 

According to MiLB.com, the Tarpons lead its division in the 2021 season with 73 wins and 41 losses and clinched a playoff spot. 

10 Tampa Bay's Claire Farrow contributed to this report.

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10 Tampa Bay's Claire Farrow contributed to this report.