Jessica Mendoza Called Out For Conflict Of Interest

Tanya Simon
January 20, 2020

Beltran, who was hired as the Mets' manager this past offseason, was named as one of the key conspirators in the Astros sign-stealing scheme by Major League Baseball. I am totally telling your future teammates, helping them win, letting people know.

The criticisms miss that Fiers was (and is) risking what remains of his career - baseball, as with other professional sports, is not above blackballing individuals - and his privilege to then enjoy a quiet retirement.

Former Astros pitcher Mike Fiers, now with the Oakland Athletics, was the only player with firsthand knowledge of the scheme who spoke on the record, cementing himself as the "whistleblower" in the story.

According to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post, the network has considered replacing commentator Jessica Mendoza, with ESPN wanting to build the booth around Alex Rodriguez.

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"I get it. If you're with the Oakland A's and you're on another team, I mean, heck yeah, you better be telling your teammates, 'Look, hey, heads up, if you hear some noises when you're pitching, this is what's going on.'" Mendoza told ESPN's Mike Golic early Thursday morning. For sure. But to go public, yeah. It was a player that was a part of it, that benefited from it during the regular season when he was a part of that team. But to go public with it and call them out and start all of this, it's hard to swallow. Fiers wound up being named in the first sentence of Major League Baseball's report on the matter, which was published Monday and resulted in the suspensions of AJ Hinch and Jeff Luhnow. That's why he never bothered to ask Carlos Beltrán about those allegations during the interviews that led to his hiring as manager of the Mets.

On Thursday afternoon, Mendoza released a statement about her comments on "Golic & Wingo". Receiving league-wide access as a baseball analyst for ESPN, while also having the ability to report to the Mets, seemed like an obvious conflict of interest. Mendoza's now saying it was "critical" that this was made public and that cheating is being addressed. She has been an adviser to the Mets and general manger Brodie Van Wagenen since last March.

"Jessica was speaking as an ESPN analyst, not as a spokesperson for the Mets", Van Wagenen said.

The Athletic had other sources and could have been working on the Astros story well before Fiers chose to attach his name to his remarks. He added that he did not have a chance to speak with her yet. "Why didn't you step up and stop it", Garner said.

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