In 2016, Mets general manager Jared Porter bombarded a U.S. baseball reporter with inappropriate text messages while she was serving as the Cubs’ director of professional scouting, according to an ESPN report on Monday night.
Porter confirmed sending the messages, including an exposed penis, but told ESPN that the explicit photos were “a bit like joke pictures” and not of his own genitals.
Mets President Sandy Alderson said in a statement that the club would investigate the matter. Porter, 41, was hired by the team last month when he set up new front office roles under owner Steve Cohen.
“I spoke directly to Jared Porter about events in 2016 that were first brought to our attention tonight,” Alderson told ESPN. “Jared has admitted his grave assessment of error to me, taken responsibility for his behavior, expressed remorse and apologized for his actions beforehand.
“The Mets take these matters seriously, expect all of our employees to behave professionally and ethically, and will in no way condone the behavior described in your story. We will follow up on the facts on this serious issue.”
Porter met the reporter in an elevator in 2016 and exchanged business cards with her. What the reporter expected to be professional correspondence quickly became troubling – he once sent her more than 60 unanswered messages, the report said.
ESPN did not use the woman’s name “because she fears a backlash in her home country”. She said she contacted a Cubs employee about the Porter matter at one point, but described that person as often combative and unhelpful.
The Cubs said they were unaware of the allegations against Porter until this week and suggested that the unnamed employee speaking to the reporter do so on his own initiative.
“Had we been notified, we would have acted quickly because the alleged behavior violated our code of conduct,” the Cubs told ESPN. “While (Porter and the unnamed employee) are no longer with the organization, we are taking sexual harassment issues seriously and plan to investigate the matter.”