Q&A: NU alumna Katie Krall joins Boston Red Sox as minor league coach in historic signing


Source: Katie Krall

Katie Krall (left) poses for a picture on her first day of work at the 2018 MLB First Year Player Draft. Krall joined the three-year MLB Inaugural Fellowship program this summer.

Lucas Kim, Reporter


Four years after graduating from Northwestern, Katie Krall (Weinberg ’18) has already made strides in professional baseball.

The Park Ridge native signed with the Boston Red Sox in January as a development coach for the double-A Portland Sea Dogs, making Boston the first MLB franchise with two women coaches. While Krall was an NU student, she served as the first student promotions coordinator for the baseball team, coordinator of the 2016 Chicago Cubs World Series trophy tour and assistant general manager in the Cape Cod Baseball League. Krall then held various analytical and front office roles with the MLB, the Cincinnati Reds and Google before joining the Red Sox.

The Daily spoke to Krall about her new job, previous experiences and perspective on baseball’s future.

This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.

The Daily: When and how did you first get into baseball?

Krall: My godfather, Rick Stelmaszek, was the bullpen coach of the Minnesota Twins and was with them for 32 years. He actually wore number 43 and that’s the number I’m going to have this year as a tribute to him. But I knew from an early age that there was a lot to baseball that wasn’t necessarily being a shortstop on the field. And so that really appealed to me if I could structure a career and be part of the game, even if I wasn’t necessarily in the lineup.

The Daily: How did your role as NU baseball’s student promotions coordinator prepare you for your current career?

Krall: College baseball is such a crucial component of the pipeline, not only to the major leagues, but also the draft. Being able to get to know people on that individual basis and see how they go about their practice and routine was super foundational for me at Northwestern.

The Daily: How does your current on-the-field role with the Red Sox differ from your previous role in the front office?

Krall: A large portion of my responsibilities at the Reds was to evaluate a player and determine whether he represented marginal value in comparison to the players that we currently had. In this role, I’m in uniform every day in the trenches with the guys. These are the players that we have, so how are we going to best allow them to succeed and give them the tools to really perform and win tonight?

The Daily: In recent years, we’ve seen women break many long-standing barriers within professional baseball such as Kim Ng becoming the first ever female general manager with the Marlins, and Bianca Smith with the Red Sox, becoming the first Black woman to coach professional baseball. How important is this representation and where do you see it going?

Krall: The most crucial aspect of building on trailblazers like Kim and Bianca is ensuring that there is a pipeline at all different rungs of the ladder, so that you’re not only hiring women to be interns, but you’re promoting women to be directors of baseball operations. And you’re not only interviewing women for assistant (general manager) positions, but you’re hiring them for those roles.

The Daily: When did the realization of “I’m finally in the big leagues” hit you?

Krall: The 2021 draft. The Reds printed out our names and underneath, you’re supposed to write your three gut-feel picks that, regardless of stats, you really feel like had a chance to reach the big leagues. When I walked into our war room the first day of the draft and saw my name up there with the space for me to list the three players, that was very validating. It was a tangible representation that I’m part of this team.

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