Major League Baseball announced a series of umpire moves for the 2024 season.
One was Jen Pawol, who was selected to work a full-time big league spring training schedule in 2024.
According to MLB, Pawol will be the first female umpire assigned to major league spring training games since 2007. It’ll be the third time this has ever taken place.
Pawol, 47, was promoted to Triple-A last spring.
“No one can take (getting to) Triple A away from me,” she told The Athletic last summer. “I’m three months in, and no matter what happens, I can continue to make a positive impact on the game, and that’s really exciting.”
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In that June article by Britt Ghiroli, she was surrounded by people who supported her, including her crew chief, Jonathan Ortega. He not only said she was going to make it to the big leagues but called her one of the hardest workers he’s ever known.
“I don’t know if it will be one year or two years from now, but I think she’s going to do it,” he said.
There’s a chance that happens.
Pawol’s background in sports had her deemed to be a part of the game for years to come.
She was a standout at West Milford High School and was elected into the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2022. Pawol went to Hofstra on a softball scholarship, where she hit for a .332 average with 15 homers, 102 RBIs, and 22 stolen bases.
She began umpiring in 2006 and started her minor-league umpiring career in 2016 with the Gulf Coast League. She became the seventh woman to umpire a MiLB game and said the following after the announcement in a statement:
“Beginning my career as a professional baseball umpire this week is a privilege that goes beyond words,” said Pawol. “I went to the Major League Baseball Umpire Camps and the Minor League Baseball Umpire Training Academy with an open mind, a strong work ethic and a passion for umpiring, and I’m honored to be starting this exciting journey in the Gulf Coast League.”
The additional umpire moves, as announced by the league, include veteran umpires Ed Hickox and Jeff Nelson announcing their retirement and Chris Guccione being named as the new crew chief.