18-year-old becomes first female on Division I varsity baseball team

Baseball in the Grass
Posted at 10:23 AM, Nov 22, 2022

Brown University has added the first woman to play on an NCAA Division I varsity baseball team.

Olivia Pichardo, 18, made the team as a walk-on after trying out in the fall, the team said in a statement.

"Every fall, we hold tryouts for students interested in joining our team," said Grant Achilles, head baseball coach at Brown. "It's a workout common for baseball and allows us to evaluate athleticism and arm strength, as well as both offensive and defensive skills. That day, Olivia put together the most complete walk-on tryout I have seen from a player since becoming a head coach."

Pichardo said she was surprised to find out she made the team.

"It was a surreal moment for me because it's something I've wanted since eighth grade," she said. "It's kind of crazy to know that I'm living out my dream right now and the ideal college experience that I've always wanted, so that's really cool."

Pichardo said she started playing baseball when she was around five years old.

Prior to enrolling at Brown, Pichardo was a member of the USA Baseball Women's National Team. She also played club baseball in New York.

Pichardo will serve as a utility player on the team, playing both the infield and outfield.

Their first game of the season is scheduled to take place in February.