Cubs owner Joe Ricketts sued for sexual harrassment

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Patricia Davis and Patricia Duncan filed a federal lawsuit against Joe Ricketts and the Opportunity Education Foundation, claiming Ricketts fired them from his Nebraska-based charity after they complained of sexual harrassment.

Ricketts, the founder of TD Ameritrade, bought the Cubs in 2009. The lawsuit isn’t team-related, though. It’s related strictly to his Opportunity Education Foundation, and, for what it’s worth, there’s nothing in the report to suggest he did any of the alleged sexual harrassing.

Davis and Duncan allege Ricketts re-hired the charity’s chief operating officer shortly after the COO was fired amid the women’s complaints. The suit alleges the COO often commented about Davis’ legs and cleavage and once putted a golf ball into Duncan’s office, saying “I’m trying to get into your hole.”

Ricketts’ attorney told the AP the lawsuit was meritless.  According to the report, the Nebraska Equal Opportunity Commission found reasonable cause of retaliation but not of sexual harassment.

Padres fire Andy Green

Andy Green
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The Padres fired manager Andy Green on Saturday, per an official team release. Bench coach Rod Barajas will step into the position for the remaining eight games of the 2019 season.

Executive Vice President and GM A.J. Preller gave a statement in the wake of Green’s dismissal:

I want to thank Andy for his tireless work and dedication to the Padres over the last four seasons. This was an incredibly difficult decision, but one we felt was necessary at this time to take our organization to the next level and expedite the process of bringing a championship to San Diego. Our search for a new manager will begin immediately.

In additional comments made to reporters, Preller added that the decision had not been made based on the Padres’ current win-loss record (a fourth-place 69-85 in the NL West), but rather on the lack of response coming from the team.

“Looking at the performance, looking at it from an improvement standing, we haven’t seen the team respond in the last few months,” Preller said. “When you get to the point where you’re questioning where things are headed … we have to make that call.”

Since his hiring in October 2015, Green has faced considerable challenges on the Padres’ long and winding path to postseason contention. He shepherded San Diego through four consecutive losing seasons, drawing a career 274-366 record as the club extended their streak to 13 seasons without a playoff appearance. And, despite some definite strides in the right direction — including an eight-year, $144 million pact with Eric Hosmer, a 10-year, $300 million pact with superstar Manny Machado, and the development of top prospect Fernando Tatís Jr. — lingering injuries and inexplicable slumps from key players stalled the rebuild longer than the Padres would have liked.

For now, they’ll prepare to roll the dice with a new skipper in 2020, though any potential candidates have yet to be identified for the role. It won’t come cheap, either, as Green inked a four-year extension back in 2017 — one that should have seen him through the team’s 2021 campaign.