It is with great pride that today’s post focuses on a prestigious award won by one of the Tacoma Rainiers front office members.
Ashley Schutt – the Tacoma Rainiers Director of Baseball Operations and Merchandise – has been named the Pacific Coast League’s Woman Executive of the Year. That puts her in the running for the Rawlings Woman Executive of the Year award which covers all of Minor League Baseball, and will be announced at the Baseball Winter Meetings in December.
Ashley is part of the glue of the organization, a behind-the-scenes person who works extremely hard to make the Tacoma Rainiers a smooth operation.
She oversees and operates the entirety of the Rainiers day-to-day dealing with the Seattle Mariners, including player transfers and all baseball-related expenses. She is in charge of the Rainiers employees who work in baseball operations, all the way down to the bat boys.
Schutt takes full responsibility of the Tacoma Rainiers team travel throughout the expansive and sometimes difficult-to-navigate PCL, which is a major project in itself. This role became even larger when Tacoma hosted the Triple-A All-Star Game in 2017, and she coordinated the arrival and departure of over 100 All-Stars and Triple-A executives.
Ashley has greeted Mariners prospects coming up from Double-A for their first time, helping them get assimilated in a new city. On the flip side, she has stood by as a released player cleans out his locker, and then driven him to the airport.
She is a one-woman welcoming committee for the Rainiers opponents when they arrive in Tacoma – and the umpires, too. Ashley makes sure the visiting team gets from the airport to the hotel, gets checked in, is able to make their flight out of town after the series, and she handles any difficulties along the way.
Ashley coordinates the Rainiers player appearances in the community, lining up guys to visit the children’s hospital, or the Boy and Girls Club, or one of the many other community outreach programs the Rainiers and Mariners participate in.
A Tacoma native and lifelong Mariners fan, Ashley gets some fun perks with her job. She knows who is going up to the big leagues (and who is coming down) before any of us do – and often before the player himself knows. She is really, really good at keeping a secret.
The majority of front office jobs in baseball are revenue-producing roles, and Ashley excels there too. She oversees the Rainiers merchandise operations, including the Cheney Stadium Team store. Tacoma has ranked in the Top 25 of MiLB merchandise sales for each of the last three years.
The entire Tacoma Rainiers organization is proud of Ashley today. In her honor, here are five Ashley Schutt Fun Facts:
- Ashley started her Rainiers career on summer break as a student, working on the Fun Squad. A former Stadium High School softball player, she first gained attention for her strong arm throwing softy balls and t-shirts into the crowd.
- A University of Oregon graduate, Ashley is only mildly annoying during College Football season.
- Her ability to construct and devour enormous breakfast burritos from the clubhouse spread prior to Sunday day games has earned the respect and awe of Rainiers players and coaches alike.
- It is likely that there is nobody in the Puget Sound region happier than Ashley Schutt to hear that Alaska Airlines announced a nonstop SeaTac-to-El Paso flight earlier this week*.
- Just this morning, Ashley and her husband Ryan welcomed their first child into the world.
- Marco Gonzales had a strong start, but the M’s lost to Texas on Thursday night and will head into the final weekend with 86 wins. The development of Gonzales has been one of the highlights of the 2018 season.
- The Mariners announced their organizational minor league awards.
- Interesting story from Fangraphs on Rainiers and Mariners reliever Justin Grimm, and the changes he has made this season.
*I am a close second.