Smart Women: Playing ball with the big boys

RAPID CITY, S.D. (SMART WOMEN) NEW YORK CITY. (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- She’s a jewel of the New York Yankees farm system. Jane Rogers is hitting it out of the park as a professional baseball rarity; a female executive.

In major league baseball, there are 160 minor league general managers. And Jane Rogers is just one of four women who hold that title. She has spent 18 years working her way up the New York Yankee organization, from office manager to General Manager.

“I was a group sales manager, I was a toilet bowl cleaner, a battery flashlight stuffer. Whatever needed to be done.” Jane Rogers told Ivanhoe.

Will Smith, President of the Staten Island Yankees said “It probably helps to have thick skin, as unfair as that may be. But it probably helps me to have thick skin. Or anybody else that’s going to rise to a level like that.”

“Assume that everybody’s all the same. Not men and women. And you’ll be fine, and you’ll be accepted for what you are.” Rogers advised.
Part player confidant, part fan liaison, part number crunching executive. The key to Rogers success; be yourself and be versatile.

“I know my role and the places when I should be a lady, or part you know be one of the guys. There is a difference and there’s a balance.” Rogers said.

“Work hard. I mean Jane works hard. That’s why she’s been doing it as long as she has.” Smith explained.

Elizabeth Kasegrande, Sales Manager of the S.I. Yankees told Ivanhoe “I found it hard myself to try to fit in and be one of the boys. But you find your niche and you do what’s right for you. And you find your own style.”

“Just don’t give up. There’s barriers that are being broken every day for women. In baseball and every place else.” Rogers advised.
Late New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner once told Rogers, “young lady, just keeping doing what you’re doing.” So far, that formula is keeping her in the game.

Rogers didn’t know anything about baseball. Before applying for the Staten Island Yankees job nearly 20 years ago, she was selling garage doors.

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Contributors to this news report include: Joey Wahler, Field Producer; Roque Correa, Editor; Taso Stefanidis, Videographer; Gabriella Battistiol, News Assistant.