Pirates hire first in-uniform female coach

January 12th, 2022

PITTSBURGH – For the first time in franchise history, the Pirates will have an in-uniform female coach.

Caitlyn Callahan will serve as a development coach for the organization, based out of its Pirate City complex in Bradenton, Fla, the team announced on Tuesday.

“Excited to announce that I’ve accepted a position with the Pittsburgh Pirates as a Development Coach,” Callahan wrote on LinkedIn. “Thank you to [coordinator of player development] Michael Chernow and [coordinator of Minor League technology and video] Marc Roche for bringing me out to Florida in November and extending this incredible offer to me. I was beyond impressed with all the coaches, staff and players I met, and I am looking forward to being a part of this organization.”

Callahan, a former Division I softball player at Boston University, comes to the Pirates with Major League experience after serving as the Reds’ Minor League video and technology intern for the past two seasons. She also served the Staten Island Yankees as a baseball operations assistant in 2019 and was the assistant GM for the Cape Cod League's Brewster Whitecaps, a college summer baseball team, in 2017-18.

The news continues what many hope will be a growing trend of women playing on-field roles for MLB organizations. Alyssa Nakken made history last season as the first woman to coach on a Major League staff for the Giants, Rachel Balkovec was named a manager in the Yankees farm system and Sewickley, Pa., native Bianca Smith became the first Black woman to serve as a coach when the Red Sox hired her as a Minor League coach in 2020. In the front office, Marlins general manager Kim Ng became the first female GM of a team in any of North America’s four major sports leagues last season.

Callahan’s hiring was one of a few the Pirates made ahead of the holiday break to bolster their Minor League development team. Here are a few other moves.

• Longtime pitching coach and development guru Dewey Robinson will join the Pirates as a special advisor for pitching development.

Robinson began his tenure in coaching for MLB organizations in 1987 in the White Sox farm system. After 10 years there, he moved to a role with the Astros in a Minor League capacity before becoming pitching coach from 2008-09. Houston chose not to keep his contract after '09, so Robinson joined the Rays as a Minor League pitching instructor, working his way to the role of director of pitching development last season.

• Dan Meyer will take over as the pitching coach at Triple-A Indianapolis.

Meyer, who fills the spot left by the Pirates’ 2021 Danny Murtaugh Coach of the Year in Joel Hanrahan, served the Braves’ farm system from 2015-21, most recently as the pitching coach and interim manager for the Double-A Mississippi Braves.

Meyer is a former Pirate farmhand, whose tenure with the organization was cut short by shoulder surgery after pitching only 19 1/3 innings in 2011 at Triple-A.

• Chris Truby will join the Pirates as a Minor League infield coordinator.

After four years as an MLB third baseman, Truby’s first coaching job for an MLB organization came with the Pirates as a Minor League coach in 2007. However, he spent one year on the job before moving to the Phillies for the next 13 years, most recently as the Minor League field coordinator, a job he held from 2018-21.