Mike North: “I’ve got to tell you something folks. You know, I’ve been called every name in the book doing this job since the early 90s. Good names, bad names, and everything in between. I’ve been called everything from a pillar in the community to a guy who’s the best who did it in Chicago’s history to a racist and a sexist. I’m going to just tell you right now what everybody else doesn’t want to say, except maybe the regular fan who you see on social media: Jessica Mendoza is the worst baseball announcer who has ever announced the game of baseball. Now, if you want to call me a sexist, go ahead. But I’m an observer, and I’ve been observing and listening to baseball announcers for 20, 30, 40, 50 years. And I’ll tell you right now I don’t care if you’re Cassidy Hubbarth, I love Cassidy, Christine Brennan, Michelle Beadle, these are all people I respect, Ann Meyers, Cheryl Miller. You want me to go on? Pam Oliver. Because apparently I have to tell everybody nowadays - because of the PC crowd - the females I like before I can criticize one. If Jessica Mendoza continues on I believe someday they’re going to have to replace her, unless the rating are okay, but I don’t care. What I do now is I shut the sound down to watch that game; she’s just not a good announcer. If she was a man, she’d be (fired like) Tony Kornheiser or Dennis Miller. OK? And that’s the God honest truth about it. Period. End of Story. I listened for an inning last night, and I had to shut it off.”
Major League Baseball teams could do a better job of hiring minority candidates for managing and GM posts or women for VP and other administrative positions, according to an annual report released Wednesday.
The study is overseen by Richard Lapchick of The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport at the University of Central Florida and is similar in scope to those he conducts examining other leagues.
Baseball teams were given a grade of C-plus for racial hiring practices for managers….
The grades given to MLB’s central office – an A-plus for racial hiring practices and B-minus for gender hiring practice – were far better than at the club level. As for female candidates, teams received an F for hiring vice presidents, a C for senior team administration positions, and another C for professional administration.
“In terms of opportunities for women,” Lapchick said, “there’s a lot left to be desired.”
“This isn’t just an African-American celebration. This is about the opening of doors for everybody,” Hurdle said, according to the Beaver County Times. “I still believe firmly there is going to be a day where there is a female player in the big leagues. I got that. Where it goes, I don’t know. I don’t believe I’ll be in the dugout to see it.”
Hurdle, 58, may not be too far off. After all, it wasn’t too long ago when Mo’Ne Davis dominated the Little League World Series, though her dream lies in basketball. Even so, Sarah Hudek, who pitched for the U.S. in the Pan Am Games last summer, earned her first win as a reliever in college baseball two months ago.
As for coaching, Justine Siegal made history by being a guest instructor for the Oakland Athletics’ Instructional League team last fall.
Sports Illustrated’s Richard Deitsch asked several reporters who cover Major League Baseball last month if they believe they would see a female baseball player in the next 50 years, and the answers were split.
Wallace’s scouting workload from March through August, covering amateur players in most New England states, is practically full time. Officially speaking, though, Wallace is the scouting bureau’s only part-time scout (maintaining a law practice and raising a 16-month-old son will lead to some compromises).
That leaves 22-year-old Amanda Hopkins in a class of her own.
Bill Bavasi, who succeeded Marcos as the scouting bureau’s senior director, said that if the Mariners had not hired Hopkins, he would have.
Hopkins might be the youngest scout in the game this year, but she has loads of experience. Her father, Ron, is the scouting director for the Pittsburgh Pirates, and he previously held the position with the Texas Rangers and the Oakland Athletics. Amanda Hopkins played college softball at Central Washington and was an intern for the Mariners for three summers.
“We sent her to scout school, and she ranked pretty high in the class,” the Mariners’ scouting director, Tom McNamara, told MLB.com. “When I called to tell her we’d nominated her for scout school, she was in tears on the phone, literally in tears. It was kind of chilling. It meant a lot to her.”
I watched a few of the games which Jessica Mendoza broadcasted. I get that it’s great to have a woman in the booth. I don’t particularly get why it’s great to have Jessica Mendoza in the booth. Although stealing time away from John Kruk, Dan Shulman, and Curt Schilling improves the broadcast, I don’t remember her saying anything particularly insightful. I’d much rather have ESPN get rid of all three of them, cut the broadcast team down to two people and make sure those two people understand they don’t need to fill every moment of air time with drivel.
“I met and worked with Jessica Mendoza several years ago when I did a story for ‘Real Sports’ on the loss of softball in the Olympics,” said Andrea Kremer, a chief correspondent for the NFL Network and correspondent for HBO’s “Real Sports.” “Her intellect, knowledge, charisma and natural on-camera presence resonated for me back then. When I saw she was stepping in on ‘Sunday Night Baseball,’ I was proud of her and thrilled because she is the perfect person to get this opportunity—a pro, who happens to be a woman, that brings a lifetime of playing experience to the booth.
“She may be getting extra attention because of her gender, but she’s excelling in her new job without regard to it.”
The Seattle Mariners have hired Amanda Hopkins as a full-time amateur scout, making her the first female to hold that position in Major League Baseball in almost 60 years.
Susan Slusser of The San Francisco Chronicle first reported the news on Monday.
Hopkins is following in the footsteps of her father, Ron Hopkins, who spent eight seasons as a national cross checker for the Oakland Athletics before becoming the Texas Rangers‘ scouting director from 2003–09. He was also the special assistant to Rangers general manager Jon Daniels in 2010.
Hopkins’ brother, Ross Hopkins, was selected in the 40th round of the 2007 MLB draft by the Cincinnati Reds. He has since spent several seasons in the minor leagues.
Hopkins played softball at Central Washington University before joining the Mariners in the front office last season.