Luis Rojas of the New York Mets condemns the actions of fired coach Ryan Ellis


Mets manager Luis Rojas on Wednesday condemned the behavior of former New York hitting performance coordinator Ryan Ellis, but said he never saw his co-worker act inappropriately. Ellis was fired last month for sexual harassment.

Athletic reported Wednesday that in the summer of 2018, three Mets employees complained to human resources that Ellis, then the minor league hitting coordinator, had directed lewd comments to them in person and via text message.

Ellis, promoted to the major league coaching staff last summer, was fired last month after New York investigated the matter a second time. His firing came shortly after the club fired newly hired general manager Jared Porter for sending sexually explicit and uninvited text messages and pictures to a reporter in 2016 while working for the Chicago Cubs.

Former Mets manager Mickey Callaway, now the Los Angeles Angels’ pitching coach, was suspended this month and is under investigation amid allegations of inappropriate behavior toward several women working in sports media.

In a statement to The Athletic, New York said it investigated and sanctioned Ellis in 2018, but did not terminate his job. The team said it received new information in January about Ellis ‘behavior in 2017-18 and fired him on January 22 for “violating company policy and failing to meet the Mets’ standards of professionalism and personal conduct.”

“We have set new expectations,” Rojas said from the club’s spring training complex in Port St. Lucie, Florida. “New avenues for reporting cases like this have also been added. It has been disappointing. Sorry to see it from afar.”

Ellis, a former minor league infielder, was hired by the Mets as a minor league coach in 2006. Rojas joined the franchise a year later as manager of his Dominican Summer League team, and both had been with the organization since then, spending most of that time. time in the minor leagues.

Rojas took over as New York manager in January 2020 after Carlos Beltrán was fired 77 days into his tenure for his role in the 2017 Houston Astros cheating scandal. Ellis joined the Major League Baseball staff. Leagues for the pandemic-shortened regular season after hitting coach Chili Davis retired. Ellis was with the team during the 60-game season.

“My relationship with Ryan, knowing him for years here in the Mets organization, has been strictly baseball,” Rojas said. “That’s what we had in terms of conversations.”

“Such bad behaviors are simply unacceptable,” he added. “We must have a safe environment to work, a safe workplace.”

Rojas said he’s had regular video meetings with his coaching staff this offseason, and Ellis hadn’t been a part of that group because Davis is returning for the 2021 season.

Women who spoke to The Athletic about Ellis described sexually explicit comments made in person and persistent and unwanted text messages that were sexual in nature.

Rojas credited new owner Steve Cohen for responding quickly to allegations against Porter and Ellis and pointed to new reporting procedures the team put in place for employees to report wrongful behavior, including an external hotline that allows employees to stay on the job anonymity if you prefer.

Major League Baseball has adopted a similar hotline for league and team employees that is also available to non-league employees, such as journalists.

“I’m pretty sure this kind of behavior is something that will be unacceptable in this organization,” Rojas said. “I’ll leave it at that.”

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