Mickey Callaway became the subject of an MLB investigation on Tuesday but managed to keep his job, for now, as Los Angeles Angels pitching coach a day after a report detailed accusations of lewd behavior by the former Mets manager.
The Angels did, however, suspend Callaway, pending the team’s investigation with the league.
"Late [Monday] we were made aware of the allegations reported in The Athletic," the Angels said in a statement Tuesday afternoon. "This morning we suspended Mickey Callaway, and will work closely with MLB to conduct a full investigation."
ESPN, citing an anonymous source, reported that Callaway denied any wrongdoing, which protects him from being fired without an investigation, and that MLB and the Angels hope to make the investigation a quick one.
Five female media members based in multiple cities told The Athletic that Callaway aggressively pursued them while working for Cleveland (2010-17), the Mets (2017-19) and the Angels (2019-20). Callaway sent them texts, emails and social media messages — including shirtless photos in more than one case — and in person made suggestive comments about their bodies and outfits, according to the report.
Among the details of the accounts from the women: Callaway, who is married, massaged a woman’s shoulders in the dugout, suggested sleeping naked because it is good for the skin, said he would give a reporter information about the Mets if she got drunk with him, and invited one to a concert.
MLB said in a statement Tuesday morning that it "has never been notified of any allegations of sexually inappropriate behavior by Mickey Callaway."
This is the second recent instance of a high-profile baseball employee accused of acting inappropriately toward female members of the media. Last month, the Mets fired general manager Jared Porter hours after they learned he sent dozens of unanswered texts, including explicit photos, to a woman reporter in 2016. Porter admitted doing so.
Then, too, MLB decided to open an investigation. A source said Tuesday that the Porter inquiry is ongoing.
After the Porter episode, MLB promised to make changes to help prevent such issues in the future, according to an email Baseball Writers’ Association of America president C. Trent Rosecrans sent to BBWAA members Monday night.
Among them: MLB is setting up a hotline — through a third party — for individuals to report these kinds of incidents. It also is finalizing an ethics hotline fact sheet and a code of conduct, which the BBWAA recommended be displayed on large posters in teams’ clubhouses, just as is done with rules regarding gambling, social media and how to wear a uniform.
Those ideas stemmed from a meeting last week between BBWAA leadership and two MLB executives: chief communications officer Pat Courtney and Michele Meyer-Shipp, whom the league hired in August as its chief people and culture officer.
Meyer-Shipp oversees MLB’s human resources activities, including talent processes and programs, workplace culture, and diversity and inclusion, according to the news release that announced her hiring.
The Mets also said they are making changes as a result of these stories, though they haven’t specified what that change will look like.
Team president Sandy Alderson, who hired Callaway and Porter during separate stints with the Mets and said in both instances that he had no idea of their behavior, said in a statement late Monday night that the Mets are seeking to improve the vetting of new employees.
"I was appalled by the actions reported today of former manager Mickey Callaway," Alderson said. "I was unaware of the conduct described in the story at the time of Mickey’s hire or at any time during my tenure as General Manager. We have already begun a review of our hiring processes to ensure our vetting of new employees is more thorough and comprehensive."
With David Lennon
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