Mariners Deny Ex-Employee's Accusations Of Discrimination
The Mariners have "strongly denied all" allegations by former Mariners Dir of High Performance Lorena Martin, who yesterday "posted a string of heavy comments to her Instagram and Twitter accounts, leveling accusations of racism and discrimination and specifically naming" Exec VP & GM Jerry Dipoto, manager Scott Servais and Dir of Player Development Andy McKay, according to T.J. Cotterill of the Tacoma NEWS TRIBUNE. Martin in her posts said that she "witnessed their poor leadership and racism first hand, calling Latino players 'LAZY, DUMB, and STUPID, especially the DOMINICANS.'" Martin also said that Dipoto, in a meeting with Martin and McKay in January, called her a “cocky Latina.” In that same meeting, McKay is alleged to have said that Dominican players are “just plain stupid.” Martin said that she "reported these incidents in several meetings with the team’s human resources since spring training and to multiple Mariners staff members," adding that she felt she was fired just over a month ago in "retaliation for that." She also claimed that she was "discriminated against for being a woman." Martin said that she has "hired an attorney and is seeking wrongful termination." Mariners VP/Communications Tim Hevly: "These claims are not true. They are completely false and ludicrous. She is fabricating stories, including about her reports to human resources and the people named in this story." Martin "signed a three-year contract last offseason that made her responsible for all aspects of the Mariners’ physical and mental training approach to players and staff, including their minor league affiliates" (Tacoma NEWS TRIBUNE, 11/13).
CONTRACT LANGUAGE: In Seattle, Ryan Divish in a front-page piece cites MLB sources as saying that the Mariners are "trying to avoid paying the remaining two years on Martin’s three-year contract." That contract, "like with most higher-salary contracts in MLB," may have had a "binding arbitration clause, which means that neither party can sue the other in this situation." Instead, they "must meet with an independent arbitrator, who would determine a settlement" (SEATTLE TIMES, 11/13).