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Former Cleveland coach Mickey Callaway accused of lewd conduct towards multiple women

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Callaway is accused of lewd behavior toward five women dating back to 2015, when he was a pitching coach with Cleveland

Cleveland Indians v Detroit Tigers Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images

Five women have accused former Cleveland pitching coach and current Angels pitching coach Mickey Callaway of lewd texts and harassing messages sent over the last five years.

Accusations include topless photographs, pressuring reporters for nude photos, telling a reporter he would tell her “what’s going on with the team” if she got drunk with him, thrusting his crotch in the face of a reporter, and more in a report from Brittany Ghiroli and Katie Strang at The Athletic.

All five women who spoke to The Athletic did so under the condition of anonymity, but they include women who worked in Cleveland media while Callaway was a pitching coach there under Terry Francona from 2013-2017.

One account from 2015, writes Ghiroli and Strang, comes from a woman going by the pseudonym Hilary.

“He was trying to hang out,” she said of the nature of the messages. Still young and trying to gain a foothold in the business, Hilary met Callaway for a beer at a bar near where the Indians were staying in California. She told him up front that she was not interested in sleeping with him. Hilary also asked about Callaway’s marital status; she says he told her he was separated from his wife. Callaway didn’t push the issue, and the two ran into each other the following day at the ballpark. Their interactions were normal and professional, though Callaway continued to text her for approximately a week after they went for drinks. One of those text messages, she said, included a selfie of him shirtless.

Another includes unwanted advances from Callaway in 2016.

The first interaction Rachel (not her real name) had with Callaway was in 2016, when he was the pitching coach for the Cleveland Indians. During that season, he made a pass at her at Progressive Field, where Rachel worked in the sports media industry. Callaway commented on her appearance and stared at her in a way that she found inappropriate, Rachel remembers. She brushed it off. It was the type of behavior that she, not unlike many women in the business, has experienced before.

“He was trying to make conversation in a flirty-type of way. It sounds cynical, but it was an eye-roll situation,” she said of their first interaction. “He isn’t the only person who has done this.”

None of the women contacted by The Athletic were aware of formal complaints filed while Callaway was in Cleveland. However, it is reported that the Mets were made aware of an incident that occurred before they hired him to manage their team in 2018 — which would presumably be when he was an employee of the Cleveland organization. It was also made clear in the story that Callaway’s behavior was an open secret to the women who had to cover Callaway during his career, and his lewd acts accelerated once he arrived in New York.

While Cleveland initially declined to respond to the allegations prior to the publication of the story, they did release a statement to The Athletic shortly after it was posted.

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 job.