PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Brown University freshman Olivia Pichardo is making history as the first woman to make a Division I baseball roster.
Coach Grant Achilles announced Monday that Pichardo made the varsity roster for the upcoming season as a walk-on utility player.
“Olivia put together the most complete walk-on tryout I have seen from a player since becoming a head coach,” Achilles said in a press release.
Pichardo was a pitcher and outfielder for the USA Baseball Women’s National Team and played club baseball in New York. She spent two weeks with the Brown program this fall, going through practice and workouts with current players, and working out as a middle infielder, outfielder and pitcher.
A native of Queens, Pichardo played varsity high school baseball at Garden School in seventh and eighth grade. As a member of Team USA this summer, she participated in the Friendship Series against Team Canada in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada. Pichardo also interned in the Mets' Amateur Scouting Department.
The 18-year-old said it was “a surreal moment” when she was told she made the team during a hitters and pitchers meeting.
“I’m living out my dream right now and the ideal college experience that I’ve always wanted, so that’s really cool,” said Pichardo, who threw out the ceremonial first pitch for the Mets on Women’s Day at Citi Field in August.
Brown noted nearly 20 women have been members of college baseball rosters, with at least eight currently slated to suit up this season, but none at the NCAA Division I level.
“I’m just really glad that we’re having more and more female baseball players at the collegiate level, and no matter what division, it’s just really good to see this progression,” Pichardo said. “It’s really paving the way for other girls in the next generation to also have these goals that they want to achieve and dream big and know that they can do it.”