BOSTON (CBS) — On a number of important issues plaguing the sport of baseball, Nick Francona has been an outspoken advocate. On Tuesday, that role led to him publicly calling out his own father.
Prompted by a new story in The Athletic detailing further allegations of former pitching coach Mickey Callaway’s predatory behavior toward women, Nick Francona posted a statement about his father, Terry Francona.READ MORE: GoFundMe Pages For Pembroke Crash Victims Raise Over $200,000
“This isn’t easy, but it needs to be said,” Nick Francona began.
“When the news about Mickey Callaway’s behavior first came out earlier this year, I confronted my father, [Indians president of baseball operations] Chris Antonetti, and others with the Cleveland Indians. I wanted to know why they didn’t say anything to me when the Mets hired Mickey Callaway and they gave him a strong endorsement. My father lied to me and said he didn’t know. Additionally, I think he and his colleagues fail to understand what is acceptable behavior and what isn’t.”
Nick Francona continued: “I confronted my father again this morning and it is clear that he simply doesn’t get it. I am hesitant to get into the personal details of my family situation, but my father and I do not have a particularly close relationship, largely as a result of disagreements about his conduct, some of which has been reported over the years, and some of which has not.”
The latest allegations in The Athletic state that in 2017, “an angry husband repeatedly called the team’s fan services department to complain that Callaway had sent ‘pornographic material’ to his wife. Those calls were brought to the attention of Antonetti, manager Terry Francona and general manager Mike Chernoff; the Indians spoke with Callaway about the matter.”
According to one Cleveland-area attorney, Terry Francona was aware of the allegations and took them seriously, but also said, “I’m not losing my pitching coach.” That quote came from a recorded call, but the attorney told The Athletic that any quotes taken from that call would be “misquoting” and “sensationalism.”READ MORE: Subaru Recalls Cars And SUVs With Potential Engine, Suspension Problems
Nick Francona said that the culture within the Cleveland Indians organization is not unique in baseball, and that commissioner Rob Manfred’s office is “part of the problem, not the solution.”
— Nick Francona (@NickFrancona) March 2, 2021
Still, he held his father — the former Red Sox manager who has been Cleveland’s manager since 2013, working five years with Callaway as his pitching coach — accountable.MORE NEWS: States May Drop Outdoor Mask Mandates Soon, Health Experts Say
“I have always tried to stand up for what I felt was right, even when it isn’t easy. In this case, that means acknowledging that my own father and his colleagues are clearly in the wrong,” Nick Francona wrote in his statement. “Their behavior is unacceptable and, even worse, it’s hard to have faith in them to improve and learn when they seem more concerned about covering up wrongdoings than addressing them honestly.”