A league of her own!
Bianca Smith has made history becoming the first Black woman to coach professional baseball. She has been hired by the Boston Red Sox as a minor league coach. Smith was a baseball operations intern with the Texas Rangers in 2017, worked in amateur administration at the league office in 2018, and interned for the Cincinnati Reds baseball operations in 2019. She is currently the assistant baseball coach and hitting coordinator at Carroll University in Wisconsin.
2020 ended up being bigger than I ever imagined. So excited for the new year and everything to come, starting w/#ABCA2021! Here’s to an amazing 2021!! #HappyNewYear2021 #neverstoplearning #justgettingstarted https://t.co/hT2A5bjIAw
— Bianca Smith ⚾️ (@biancaesmith12) January 1, 2021
The 29-year-old will work with the team’s infielders at the Red Sox minor league facility in Fort Meyers, Fl.
“She was a great candidate coming in,” Ben Crockett, Red Sox vice president of player development, told the Boston Globe. “She’s had some really interesting experiences and has been passionate about growing her skillset and development herself.”
Carroll’s head coach, Stein Rear, echoed Crockett’s praises of Smith and said she is a great candidate for the role.
“She relates really well to our guys,” Rear told the Washington Post. “She came in, and she got to work and connected with our guys and stole a lot of one-on-one work with them. So she’s built a lot of good relationships with them, which I think is a great quality. She’s highly motivated to continue with her education.”
— FOX Sports Cincinnati (@FOXSportsCincy) August 19, 2019
Smith has been receiving support from the community on her new appointment. Robert Lewis Jr., the founder of The Base, a Boston-based organization that supports inner-city youth with academic and athletic opportunities, said Smith’s hiring is a milestone.
“I’m not going to lie to you, a Black woman, I mean, there’s all this symbolism that goes along with it. We all know, the Red Sox being the last team to sign a [Black person],” Lewis said. “The one great thing that I loved about it was, you know, having looked at her credentials, this isn’t just somebody that has experience at the college level, she’s going in competent and qualified.”
We know the late Toni Stone, the first woman to play big-league pro baseball, is beaming with pride!
The Red Sox plan to officially announce her appointment this month.
You’re knocking it out the park, Bianca!
Photo Credit: @biancaesmith12/Twitter