Rachel Balkovec is making history this 2021 season as the first woman hired by a major league baseball team to work as a full-time hitting coach. Balkovec currently serves as a minor league hitting coach for the New York Yankees and has worked in professional baseball for seven years. Breaking through in 2014, she was hired as the minor league strength and conditioning coordinator for the St. Louis Cardinals—the first woman to hold that position in professional baseball. A year later she became the Latin American strength and conditioning coordinator for the Houston Astros. Balkovec is a former NCAA Division 1 softball catcher who earned two master’s degrees in sports performance and human movement and has completed five baseball internships.