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Dodgers' new athletic trainer Sue Falsone: I'm really humbled

November 1, 2011 |  3:10 pm

DodgersSue Falsone knew about the history. She recognized the Dodgers had just named her the first female head athletic trainer in U.S. professional sports. Still, that’s a tad different from being prepared for the reaction to the news.

"I received hundreds of emails from people I know and people I don’t know," Falsone said. "It was amazing. It was really everybody. I’m feeling really humbled."

Falsone (pronounced fal-SONY) was named the Dodgers’ new head athletic trainer Monday. The Dodgers, of course, are a team used to firsts, though it is still looking for its first National League pennant since 1988.

Falsone, 37, was previously the major league’s first female assistant trainer. Starting in 2007, she spent four seasons with the Dodgers and trainer Stan Conte’s staff.

"This is special to me on so many different levels," she said. "No.1 is just being entrusted with this type of position with an organization such as the L.A. Dodgers. That alone is special.

"As far as being a woman, it’s surprising it’s taken until 2011 for this to happen. There are so many women athletic trainers in high school and in college, it was just bound to happen at some point."

Falsone spent the last year as vice president of Athletes’ Performance, a training and rehabilitation center based in Phoenix. While also continuing her work at AP, she will direct a partnership between the company and the Dodgers to develop innovative techniques to prevent and treat injuries.

Falsone said she understood that some may be leery of a woman working in a male domain, but she has never found it a problem.

"I’ve worked with male professional athletes for the last decade, so that’s really all I know," she said. "So it’s not really anything different or out of the ordinary for me. I’ve been in the clubhouse before, I’ve traveled with the team for several years, so I know what that is like.

"My experience has always been, I’m very respectful of their space. I know that I am in their space and need to be mindful of where I’m at. Just like they are respectful of where I am at. They know I’m going to be in the training room. I think it’s just mutual respect that I’ve never had a problem with."

And Tuesday she even offered her first official medical report: Andre Ethier (knee surgery) lives in Phoenix and has been rehabbing with her at AP.

"He’s right on track," she said.

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-- Steve Dilbeck

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