After a period of quiet in the Dr. Lorena Martin case, today we got a non-judicial update from Major League Baseball:
MLB has released a statement on their investigation of Dr. Lorena Martin's claims against the Mariners. pic.twitter.com/RquN2PbSoU— Shannon Drayer (@shannondrayer) February 6, 2019
This is a significant development, of course, and a positive one for the Mariners. Epstein Becker Green is a noteworthy and premier firm in Employment Law, and their involvement is a good sign for the investigation’s credibility. They also aren’t, as far as I know, generally engaged by Major League Baseball—which helps establish credibility that the investigation truly is independent.
This will also officially foreclose the possibility of MLB-imposed discipline on the Mariners arising from this incident. At this point any resolution in Dr. Martin’s favor would likely happen in an out of court settlement, or dismissal of the lawsuit. The case remains open, so there is still a chance that a judge could rule in her favor - likely the only scenario wherein the jobs of Jerry Dipoto, Scott Servais, and Andy McKay would be in jeopardy - but this seems unlikely.
Frankly, there’s not too much more we can say at this point. The litigation is ongoing, and thus far the matters we’ve previously covered have not been ruled on by the Court. Without knowing any more about the background evidence or interviews conducted, it’s difficult to say this is anything close to a final determination in favor of the Mariners. Lacking the contents of the investigation, we’re forced to rely on Epstein Becker Green’s determination that there is no “credible” evidence to support her evidence, a phrase they use repeatedly. With 17 persons interviewed, does that mean not one corroborated Dr. Martin’s claims? Did 4-5 employees agree with her account, but the remainder strongly denied it? The entire investigation and this release hinge on the meaning of the word “credible”, and how it is being applied. Their judgment regarding credibility could be an excellent one—but we are, for now, forced to take that on faith.
UPDATE 2:27 PM: Dr. Martin has responded on twitter to the announcement.
I am aware of the outcome of the MLB investigation. I am disappointed, but not surprised at the outcome. It is unfortunate that when I met with the Former Vice President of General Counsel of MLB, Jennifer Gefsky, as the “independent investigator”, I provided the names of corroborative witnesses who, to my knowledge, have never been contacted. It is also unfortunate that she chose not to speak with any of the Dominican trainers who were fired who could attest to the discriminatory conduct. It is also puzzling why the interviews and information obtained is being kept confidential. I would have hoped for a bit more transparency. More importantly, there were no tapes, no emails, no hard evidence requested nor evaluated other than the questioning of individuals most of whom are still employed by the Mariners. Notwithstanding this decision, I remain confident that the truth will come out and that the damage done to my career will abate.