Former New York Mets Manager Mickey Callaway was suspended through the end of the 2022 season. At that time, the now deposed Los Angeles Angels pitching coach can apply for reinstatement to Major League Baseball.
In some respects, this is good because it’s a harsher penalty than any steroid user faces for a single offense. It’s also more severe than what the Houston Astros faced.
Going further, it’s a harsher penalty than what Jose Reyes or any domestic abuser has faced. So, yes, to that end, it’s progress.
However, the penalty in and of itself is just a slap on the wrist and falls far short of being reflective of Callaway’s actions. To that, it’s time to revisit the allegations in the article written by Brittany Ghiroli and Katie Strang of The Athletic.
Callaway was accused of sending UNWANTED and UNSOLICITED pornographic pictures of himself to female reporters and requesting they reciprocate. He’d leverage his position inviting these same and other reports out for drinks to provide news or leaks.
This on top of his thrusting himself towards female reporters, and you see this was a monster. This wasn’t just harassing behavior, it was borderline criminal. Keep in mind, that’s just what we know.
Callaway’s response to this was to deny wrongdoing. He did that despite behaving this way for over five years. He did that despite their being text messages between him and his victims.
Either he knew he was screwed and opted to push Major League Baseball to act, or he really had no clue his behavior was disgusting and wrong.
It needs to be reiterated Callaway’s lewd and malicious actions took place for a period over five years. It involved multiple women, and he showed no signs of remorse. He then dragged MLB further through the mud. Of course, he did that to a situation partially of MLB’s making.
The response? A two year suspension?After FIVE PLUS YEARS of harassment, he’s suspended for TWO!
In that suspension, there’s no mandatory counseling and/or a framework for it. There’s no coinciding MLB partnership with organizations to aide in eliminating this behavior.
Sure, MLB put the provision for application for reinstatement, but that’s just kicking the rock down the road. It only has teeth if they want it to have teeth.
As we saw with Alex Cora with the Boston Red Sox and A.J. Hinch with the Detroit Tigers, if a team thinks they can help you win, they won’t care about your transgressions. Now, what Cora and Hinch did doesn’t compare to the heinous acts of Callaway, but the point remains.
After all, Callaway was “the worst kept secret in baseball.” Everyone knew what he was doing, and yet, he wasn’t fired by the Cleveland Indians. Worse yet, he was actually hired by the Mets and Angels.
In sum, we see the problem is bigger than just Callaway. To that end, we get the sense of why over five years of harassment leads to just a two year suspension.
The news Mickey Callaway was harassing women while a member of multiple organizations came to light in an article written by reported by Brittany Ghiroli and Katie Strang of The Athletic. That was the beginning of February.
In reality, the Los Angeles Angels and really all of baseball were aware prior to that report being published. After all, Callaway’s actions were termed as “the worst kept secret in baseball.”
Callaway denied the allegations, even with their being pictures and texts, and as such, an investigation was launched. That investigation is nearing its third month, and its carried through the first month of the season.
At this point, we cannot be sure what the hold-up is. This does seem like a lengthy amount of time for contract buyout talks. Maybe Callaway is looking to negotiate a deal where he gives up others while keeping his job and/or salary. No one can be quite certain.
The only thing we’re certain is Callaway is still employed for the time being, and no one can be quite sure how much longer he will be an Angels employee. All we do know is he’s currently employed by the Angels.
Wherever the Angels and MLB are doing now better be good. After all, with baseball obsessed with pace under Rob Manfred, everyone is certainly slow playing this.
The New York Mets flew into Colorado, and they were greeted with snow. That meant another postponement and another doubleheader to the schedule. It just seems like this is the way 2021 is going to go:
1. Marcus Stroman has been nothing short of phenomenal. He’s fielding his position better than anyone, and he’s 3-0 with a 0.90 ERA. He’s been better than expected, which is saying something.
2. As great as Stroman has been, Jacob deGrom is still the best pitcher on the planet. His striking out 14 and nine in a row once again put him on the precipice of Tom Seaver‘s level. That’s a testament to how great he is.
3. One remarkable thing is through the first seven years of their careers, deGrom has a better ERA+ than Seaver, and seeing the way he has started this year, it will continue through their first eight seasons. Of course, Seaver threw a lot more innings.
4. It was nice to see deGrom get picked up by his offense for once. It was also great to see Francisco Lindor deliver his first game winning RBI as a member of the Mets. Certainly, it will be the first of many.
5. Lindor’s enthusiasm out there is only matched by Stroman’s. When you have these two players out there, it makes the Mets not just more likeable but more exciting to watch.
6. While Lindor and James McCann have not hit yet the way we expect them to hit, their defense has been terrific. Case in point was McCann gunning down Trevor Story to end the game with an exceptional tag from Lindor.
7. The defense still hasn’t been there from Michael Conforto who has had a misplay and a poor throw on Saturday. On the bright side, he has started hitting again.
8. Pete Alonso has started picking it up. He has been hitting it hard all year, and at least in Coors Field, his rockets were finding holes.
9. The best way to describe how great Brandon Nimmo has been to start the season is a 1-for-4 day is an off-day. After all, it was the first time all season he only reached base fewer than two times.
10. It looks like it just might be one of those hard luck years for Jeff McNeil as not matter how much he hits it hard, it is just going to find someone.
11. While we can expect the bat to turn around, we don’t know when his glove will. He made an error which almost cost the Mets the win. While it is still early, he is at a -1 OAA. He’s generally better than that, so it is still too early to be concerned.
12. That said, the Mets best defensive alignment is still with McNeil at third and Luis Guillorme at second. That is something to keep in mind when the Mets continue to run out ground ball pitcher after ground ball pitcher.
13. Speaking of Guillorme, despite his playing very well to start the season, it appears with J.D. Davis activated off the IL, he’ll never play again. That is all the more baffling considering the Mets have all of these ground ball pitchers, and Guillorme is a flat out better player.
14. There was far too much of an overreaction to Luis Rojas going to Robert Gsellman and Jacob Barnes in the second game of the doubleheader. The Mets simply cannot keep going to Trevor May and Miguel Castro every day. They are going to burn out, and then you’re stuck with Barnes trying to hold leads.
15. The bigger issue was Barnes making the roster in the first place. The Mets had better options, and they eschewed them to carry him on the roster. Case-in-point, it appears Joey Lucchesi is probably better suited to the bullpen, which would have allowed them to carry Jordan Yamamoto.
16. Speaking of Mets pitching decisions, Steven Matz has been phenomenal to start the season. Trading him was a completely unforced error. Hopefully, it will not cost them at some point this season. And yes, he would have been successful with the Mets this year.
17. Seeing all that has transpired, it is hard to believe Sandy Alderson still has a job with the Mets. Perhaps, Steve Cohen is allowing the organizational review to complete before taking action. Until that time, Cohen at least deserves the benefit of the doubt.
18. On that topic, we are three weeks into the season, and Mickey Callaway is still employed by the Los Angeles Angels.
19. So far, Edwin Diaz has been really good. If so, that is great news for the Mets and their chances of winning the division.
20. Jonathan Villar hitting a pinch hit RBI double driving home pinch runner Albert Almora speaks to the depth the Mets have built. If they continue getting contributions from their entire roster like the way they are right now, this is going to be a truly special season.
When the initial reports regarding Mickey Callaway came to light, there was room to excuse Sandy Alderson. After all, there wasn’t much about Callaway that was under his purview.
Callaway wasn’t Alderson’s choice. He was hired by the Wilpons. It’s also notable Alderson was battling with cancer, and he was no longer with the organization when Callaway’s harassment was reported.
While Alderson was able to escape culpability and blame for Callaway, the recent report from Katie Strang and Brittany Ghiroli of The Athletic make it very clear Alderson was a very real part of the problem. In fact, Alderson helped build that culture.
Alderson hired harassers over complaints and warnings of female employees. He was aware of at least some of the harassment, perhaps all of it. He knew and was well connected with the head of Human Resources, Holly Lindvall, who tried to silence and terminate those who objected to harassment.
Remember, it was Lindvall who told Leigh Castergine to resign when she complained about Jeff Wilpon. We now know there were more complaints, and those complaints were similarly ignored.
There may have been a time we could give Alderson a charitable treatment regarding the harassment. After all, this was a veteran and Harvard educated man. He was self made.
Alderson seemed like a good guy. He certainly grew in stature while serving as a juxtaposition to Jeff Wilpon. In fact, Alderson was a direct contrast to Wilpon.
The problem is he wasn’t. Alderson may not have been the perpetrator of harassment, but he sure was an enabler. He also sees no wrong in what he did, and if his statements aren’t taken out of context, he may not have an issue with what was done.
It’s sad. Alderson spent the whole of his life building a reputation. His return to the Mets was supposed to be in glory and about unfinished business.
Instead, the same stink that attaches to everything the Wilpons touch attached to him, and he has no one to blame by himself. He could have and should have done something, and instead, he chose to allow it to happen time and again.
Due to his actions, he needs to be fired. No, he should not be allowed to resign on his own accord. Steve Cohen has to send a clear message he doesn’t condone what predated him. That requires firing his most prominent hire.
On February 1, 2021, Britany Ghiroli and Katie Strang of The Athletic wrote an article exposing how Mickey Callaway has sexually harassed women while a member of the Cleveland Indians, New York Mets, and Los Angeles Angels. In response to the revelations, each organization obviously condemned the actions, and they all promised an internal review of their organization.
When it came to the Angels, there was a question of what they should do with Callaway. It was obvious the Angels needed to cooperate with Major League Baseball in the investigation which was certainly forthcoming, but they would also have to make a decision on what to do with Callaway, who personally denied any wrongdoing.
Given the depth of the reporting, it is somewhat difficult to believe Callaway wasn’t fired on the spot. However, unlike Jared Porter, Callaway denied the allegations. As such, it was at least theoretically prudent to conduct an investigation before firing a man who would likely never get another job in baseball again.
Beyond that, there were some intimations the Callaway denial meant there needed to be an investigation prior to a final determination on his employment status. To wit, Bill Shakin and Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times surmised the investigation could be a way for the Angels to find a way to fire Callaway for “just cause” meaning they would not have to pay Callaway the remainder of the money owed on his contract.
There were other rumors and reports California employment law meant Callaway’s denial required an investigation before he could be terminated. There are conflicting reports about the veracity of that claim. At this point, that is besides the point.
The point is this investigation has been occurring for over a month now. Even with COVID19, there has been more than sufficient time to undertake an investigation. Really, at this point, MLB and the Angels are just dragging their feet at least as it pertains to Callaway. Simply put, it has been well past time for him to be fired.
One day, Cooperstown is going to come calling for Theo Epstein. After all, he was the leader for two franchises who broke curses.
Epstein was the GM for the 2004 Boston Red Sox who won a World Series for the first time in 86 years. Winning with the Red Sox apparently wasn’t challenging enough for him.
No, Epstein took over as the President of Baseball Operations for the Chicago Cubs. Whereas with the Red Sox he fortified an already great roster, he built the Cubs from the bottom up to lead them to their first World Series title in 108 years.
Now, that he’s stepped aside, everyone wants him in another important role. As jobs open up, more and more people will push for him.
Currently, he’s a consultant for Major League Baseball. There’s a push for many to name him the next commissioner. There was a push for the Mets to hire him, and there was an article from Larry Stone of the Seattle Times about how the Seattle Mariners need to hire Epstein in the wake of the Kevin Mather fallout.
There’s a certain irony in the push for anyone to hire Epstein right now, as he is emblematic of many of the problems baseball currently faces.
In terms of the Mariners, Mather “re-signed” partially as a result of his admitting to service time manipulation of Jarred Kelenic and other prospects. In some ways, Epstein is really the worst hire.
With the Cubs, Epstein dealt with the same issues with Kris Bryant. Like the Mariners intended to do with Kelenic, the team didn’t call up Bryant until they could gain another year of control.
That led to Bryant filing a grievance, which he eventually lost. He also rejected numerous attempts to sign a contract extension with the team.
In terms of the Mets, they’re still dealing with the fallout of the Mickey Callaway and Jared Porter harassment claims. Notably, the Porter harassment didn’t occur when he was with the Mets. Rather, it happened when he was with the Cubs.
As we learned, the Cubs first advised the victim to not go further with the complaint. Instead, they advised her to try to leverage her position. On multiple occasions, they followed up to ensure there would be no embarrassing law suit.
Seeing what happened under his leadership, it’s clear he has no place in baseball right now. He’s not the guy to clean up the problems. Rather, he’s the guy who helped create, and at a minimum, led organizations who actively disregarded and cover-up problems.
Unless we get an investigation and answers to very pointed questions, Epstein should not return to any MLB front office in any role. He’s created and perpetuated problems.
There may come a time for his return to baseball, but that time has not yet arrived. It can’t until he had
The running joke with Jeff Wilpon was what Nelson Doubleday had to say about him as he was selling away his ownership interest. For those who forgot, Doubleday said, “Jeff Wilpon said he’s going to learn how to run a baseball team and take over at the end of the year. Run for the hills, boys. I think probably all those baseball people will bail.” (Bergen Record).
Well, the joke has officially stopped being funny.
Wilpon was worse than anyone could’ve imagined. Really, who would’ve thought forcing an injured Pedro Martinez to pitch against doctor and manager advice wasn’t the worst thing he’s done. Imagine firing Willie Randolph in the middle of the night after the first game of a West coast trip wasn’t the most embarrassing.
No, Jeff Wilpon has done far worse. He was nothing short of a monster who was enabled by his father, Bud Selig, and Rob Manfred.
Jeff Wilpon was alleged to have tied the ability of a pregnant woman to receive a bonus with her ability to get married. He was also alleged to have said, “I am as morally opposed to putting an e-cigarette sign in my ballpark as I am to Leigh having this baby without being married.”
When she complained to Human Resources, she was advised to quit. Those HR complaints eventually led to a firing and a lawsuit.
When Jose Reyes was cut by the Colorado Rockies after his assaulting his wife leading to his arrest and her going to the hospital, the Mets brought him back. Not just that, Reyes’ family was put on display as Reyes played in a game with the Brooklyn Cyclones as he got himself into game shape.
Even with Reyes performing poorly, he wasn’t cut. In fact, Reyes would get a raise when he hit free agency. In his final year, Reyes was nominated for the Marvin Miller Man of the Year award.
Jeff Wilpon could attempt to explain these away. He can’t explain away or defend what happened with Mickey Callaway. That one is directly on him, and it exhibits who he is as a human being.
As reported by Brittany Ghiroli and Katie Strang of The Athletic, at the time he was hired by the Mets, Callaway’s harassment of female reporters was “the worst kept secret in baseball.”
Now, this is the Wilpon run Mets, and they weren’t exactly known for their thoroughness or even competence. Really, you can believe the Mets had no idea about Callaway’s behavior as they rushed through the process of hiring him after one interview.
From what we learned about the Jared Porter incident, it at least appeared there was a cover-up by the Chicago Cubs organization. However, by his own admission, Sandy Alderson didn’t reach out to speak to any women before hiring Porter.
Now, we have a second issue with a person Alderson hired. As reported by Brittany Ghiroli and Katie Strang of The Athletic, former Mets manager Mickey Callaway was a serial and unrepentant sexual harasser of reporters.
Unlike with Porter, Callaway’s disturbing behavior was “the worst kept secret in baseball.” That’s an important point here.
Yes, it needs to be noted Callaway’s first year with the Mets coincided with Alderson’s last. It must also be noted Callaway’s abuse of female reporters while he was acting as the Mets manager was reported to the Mets after Alderson officially left the organization.
Still, it would at least seem as if this should have been something which could’ve been discovered. It’s very possible, like with Porter, the background checks were quite lacking. It’s also possible the Mets simply didn’t care.
Really, it’s clear baseball didn’t care. The Cleveland Indians didn’t care as they kept him on as pitching coach and recommended him for managerial jobs. The Philadelphia Phillies didn’t care as they aggressively pursued him. Apparently, the Mets didn’t care either.
The same can be said for Joe Maddon and the Los Angeles Angels who rushed to hire him as pitching coach.
Right now, at least as the Mets are currently concerned, this is about Sandy Alderson. Alderson has now twice missed egregious behavior.
Now, as we saw with Porter, it’s at least feasible to believe he could have missed that as it was a cover-up. However, on that note, Alderson revealed the country of origin of the reporter despite the great lengths taken by all to conceal it to protect the victim.
We also know who Alderson’s boss was. Jeff Wilpon fired an unwed pregnant woman. He held out Jose Reyes as a role model. He was also aware of what Callaway did in his capacity as Mets manager, and not only did he retain Callaway, but he also was Callaway’s biggest supporter.
It’s eminently possible the Mets found this out at the interview stage and didn’t care. It’s also possible when Callaway “lit up the room,” the Mets jumped the gun before they could do a full vetting.
There’s a lot of things which are plausible explanations which fully exonerate Alderson missing sexual harassment from two of his highest profile hires. However, you look at it, Alderson missed it both times.
Keep in mind, that’s what we know. There may be more in the past, and for all we know, there may be people currently in the organization with similar transgressions. We don’t know, and based on what we’ve seen from the vetting process under Alderson, he may not have known either.
Whatever the case, this happened twice, and that’s twice too many. It’s unfair to call for Alderson’s job right now. However, it is not only fair, but it is absolutely necessary Alderson answer internally and publicly for how he missed this twice.
He also needs to answer for how he’s going to review the current front office as well as how he can ensure this never happens under his watch again.
The Mets went into Philadelphia with a chance to make a statement. On the bright side, they made that statement. On the downside, it wasn’t the statement we wanted them to make.
1. This series only further cemented Brodie Van Wagenen as the worst GM in baseball.
3. Remember when Van Wagenen said the Mets had the deepest rotation in baseball? With Jacob deGrom dealing with a neck injury, Porcello and his 5.76 is now the Mets staff ace.
5. Steven Matz had three good enough starts to begin the season before pitching terribly in his last three starts. Fortunately for him, the Mets don’t have other options to replace him in the rotation.
6. It’s easy to point fingers at Jeremy Hefner but even a pitching coach with a magic lamp would still be stuck with two incapable starters.
7. On the topic of Van Wagenen’s incompetence, Wilson Ramos has been beyond terrible this year. Just when you thought it couldn’t get worse, he completely whiffed on a tag allowing the game winning run to score.
8. Van Wagenen preached accountability and media access when he took the job. The Mets made Ramos unavailable after that lame tag attempt, and the Mets made every player who would rebut their fabricated version of events when Yoenis Cespedes opted out.
9. There’s a lot wrong with the Mets, but Luis Rojas isn’t one of them. The Mets are not losing games because of him. They’re losing because the GM is horrendous.
10. Knowing that and seeing all that has transpired since, everyone owes Mickey Callaway an apology for how he was maligned.
12. Way too much was made of Drew Smith being optioned. The Mets bullpen has depth at the MLB level, and there were legitimate options in Brooklyn.
13. No, Smith didn’t deserve to be optioned as he pitched well, and yes, Brian Dozier had been terrible, but the Mets have nothing in reserve on terms of MLB caliber hitters.
14. Speaking of the Brooklyn site, the Mets added Francisco Alvarez and Matthew Allan which means they can now be traded.
15. We should be afraid they’ll be traded for pennies on the dollar with that being the defining characteristic of Van Wagenen’s tenure.
16. On the bright side, Van Wagenen is getting exposed, and the Wilpons will sell the team without winning a World Series as majority owners.
17. Mets fans deserve better. Hopefully, we’ll get that instead of getting Alex Rodriguez.
18. The St. Louis Cardinals have played eight games. The Miami Marlins are playing catch-up and have only played 15 games. The Cincinnati Reds aren’t playing games. Naturally, MLB’s response is to loosen COVID19 return to play restrictions.
19. Good for the Cleveland Indians for optioning Zach Plesac and Mike Clevinger to the alternate site after breaking COVID19 protocols. It’s good to see someone in baseball take this pandemic seriously.
20. It’s the centennial of the Negro Leagues, and MLB did not do nearly enough to honor it. That goes double in a year where COVID19 prevented them from honoring Jackie Robinson. Shame on MLB.
With the crazy 2020 schedule, the Mets had a four game two city set with the Boston Red Sox. The road teams had the better of it.
3. With Smith and Luis Guillorme, it’s hard to conclude anything other than the Mets aren’t prioritizing getting them into games. After all, Brian Dozier wasn’t in full game shape and missed Summer Camp, yet he was activated and started the finale.
5. Diaz imploding again, and the Mets essentially admitting Robinson Cano is now a platoon player, that trade somehow got worse.
7. Aside from Rick Porcello, the Mets have gotten good starting pitching. Their offense, while disappointing, has been good. And yet, they’re under .500. Why? Because they’re the worst defensive club in baseball.
8. Much of that is attributable to J.D. Davis, who has been dreadful in left. Much like last year, he’s the worst defensive LF in baseball. It was his defense which led to the game winning rally on Wednesday.
9. The Mets need to go back to the drawing board and re-figure things out. Davis doesn’t belong in left. Amed Rosario is not a lead-off hitter. Your top OBP guy in Brandon Nimmo can’t hit ninth. Jeff McNeil is struggling at third.
11. Don’t discount Drew Smith who has been terrific.
12. Speaking of terrific young Mets pitchers, David Peterson took his velocity and game to another level in his first career start. It this is who he is now, his ceiling is much higher.
13. Despite what delusional Yankees fans will tell you Jacob deGrom is the best pitcher in baseball. He now has a 2.23 ERA in no decisions.
14. deGrom should’ve had the win, but that’s nothing new. He needs more run support.
15. The Mets had some very ugly ABs in crucial situations. Michael Conforto had a few of those. Don’t make too much of that as Conforto is a terrific hitter.
16. It’s interesting Dozier was activated but not Juan Lagares when both were very similarly situated. It’s all the more interesting when the Mets activated Ryan Cordell over Lagares when the team needed to replace Marisnick’s defense.
17. Overall, this Mets team should be better. It’s just better situational hitting (which comes and goes) and playing a better defensive lineup, which the Mets refuse to do.
18. You wonder how much longer the Mets can stick with Yoenis Cespedes. At times, he looks lost. Other times, he’s battling in AB and seems very close.
19. Speaking of Cespedes, it seems odd today is July 31 and we’re not awaiting Brodie Van Wagenen making a dumb trade.
20. We may never reach that new trade deadline with the Phillies on the cusp of an outbreak themselves, no one knowing when the Marlins can play again, and with Rob Manfred not taking this pandemic seriously.