Los Angeles Angels pitching coach Mickey Callaway, former manager of the New York Mets, “aggressively pursued” several women who work in sports media and sent three of them inappropriate photos, The Athletic reported Monday night.
Callaway sent uninvited and sometimes unanswered messages to the women via email, text or social media and asked one to send nude photos in return, according to the report. He often commented on their appearance in a way that made them uncomfortable and on one occasion “thrust his crotch near the face of a reporter” while she interviewed him, The Athletic said.
Another time, he told one of the women he’d share information about the Mets if she got drunk with him, the report said. More than one woman received a shirtless selfie or several from him, and one said he massaged her shoulders in the dugout when he thought nobody was watching, according to the report.
Five women spoke to The Athletic on condition of anonymity and they indicated Callaway’s actions spanned at least five years and three teams, the outlet reported. Two of the women said they had been warned about Callaway’s behavior by fellow media members and others in baseball, The Athletic said.
Callaway was the Cleveland Indians’ pitching coach for five years before managing the Mets from 2018-19. After he was fired by New York, he spent last season with the Angels as pitching coach.
“Rather than rush to respond to these general allegations of which I have just been made aware, I look forward to an opportunity to provide more specific responses,” the 45-year-old Callaway wrote to The Athletic in response to an email, according to the outlet. “Any relationship in which I was engaged has been consensual, and my conduct was in no way intended to be disrespectful to any women involved. I am married and my wife has been made aware of these general allegations.”
Callaway did not respond to a text message from The Associated Press.
The report came two weeks after ESPN detailed sexually explicit, uninvited text messages and images sent by former Mets general manager Jared Porter to a female reporter in 2016 when he was working for the Chicago Cubs in their front office. Porter was fired by the Mets the following morning, and Major League Baseball planned to investigate him.
Mets president Sandy Alderson, who hired Porter, was GM of the team when Callaway was hired.
According to the report, the Mets told The Athletic the club learned in August 2018 about an incident that occurred before Callaway joined the team. A spokesperson said the club investigated, but “declined to reveal the nature of the incident, the outcome of that probe or whether Callaway was disciplined.”
Callaway managed the Mets through the end of the 2019 season. Alderson stepped down as GM in June 2018 due to a cancer diagnosis and the team’s poor play.
“I was appalled by the actions reported today of former manager Mickey Callaway,” Alderson said in a statement released by the Mets late Monday night. “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.”
New owner Steve Cohen, who bought the club from the Wilpon and Katz families in early November, said: “The conduct reported in The Athletic story today is completely unacceptable and would never be tolerated under my ownership.”
MLB said it “has never been notified of any allegations of sexually inappropriate behavior by Mickey Callaway.”
The Angels and Indians also released statements.
“The behavior being reported violates the Angels Organization’s values and policies. We take this very seriously and will conduct a full investigation with MLB,” team spokesperson Marie Garvey said.
The Indians said: “We were made aware for the first time tonight of the allegations in The Athletic regarding Mickey Callaway’s behavior towards women. We are currently reviewing the matter internally and in consultation with Major League Baseball to determine appropriate next steps. Our organization unequivocally does not condone this type of behavior. We seek to create an inclusive work environment where everyone, regardless of gender, can feel safe and comfortable to do their jobs.”