How Olivia Pichardo Is Making History In D1 Baseball

Although the 2022 MLB season recently came to an end, college athletes are already gearing up for their upcoming baseball season beginning early next year. And one player, Olivia Pichardo, will make history during the 2023 NCAA baseball season. Pichardo is the first woman in the history of division one college baseball to make a team's roster, according to NPR. Pichardo hails from Queens, New York, and will be playing for Brown University once the season starts in February. According to an official media release, Pichardo began her time at Brown University in September and impressed the university coaches during walk-on tryouts for the varsity team.

The team announced its roster for the 2023 season shortly after the tryouts, which included Pichardo. "It was definitely a surreal moment for me because it's something that I've wanted since eighth grade," she revealed. "It's kind of crazy to know that I'm living out my dream right now and my ideal college experience that I've always wanted, so that's really cool."

In 2021, it was reported that more women were playing college baseball than ever before in history, according to Sports Illustrated. However, no woman had ever played at the division one level — until Pichardo. Although many are just learning her name now, Pichardo's journey started long ago.

Criticism inspired Olivia Pichardo to keep going

Olivia Pichardo just made history as the first woman to make the roster of a division one college baseball team, according to ESPN, but her interest in the game began when she was just a child. Her father, Max Pichardo, was very interested in baseball and sparked Olivia's interest in the game at a young age. Throughout her career, Pichardo received criticism because of her gender. She told MLB, "Every time I progressed to the next level, I'd be told, 'You're not going to be able to compete, you're not going to be able to compete.'" Pichardo added, "When I got older, people just wanted me to stop even more. But, I'm very stubborn. So, it was like, every time they told me I couldn't, I just told myself, 'Well, now I'm going to because you just told me not to.'"

Despite the trials and tribulations she faced in the past, Pichardo has supportive teammates now. In an official media release, she explained, "[The] coach introduced me to the entire team, and all of them greeted me warmly. Everybody was super welcoming, and I really felt that from my teammates." She added, "I did not expect that at all — that definitely took me by surprise."

Now, Pichardo is inspiring women around the world to go after their dreams and break the glass ceiling. According to the Brown Daily Herald, the team is set to play its first game on March 18.