LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Jessica Mendoza will no longer be on ESPN's “Sunday Night Baseball” or work for the New York Mets front office after signing a contract extension with the network.
ESPN announced Friday that Mendoza will be an analyst on weekday games as well as making appearances on various network shows, including “SportsCenter” and “Baseball Tonight.”
Mendoza's increased appearances on ESPN have led her to resign as a baseball operations adviser to the Mets and general manager Brodie Van Wagenen. She was hired as a Mets adviser last March.
Mendoza joined ESPN as a softball analyst and college football sideline reporter in 2007. She has been an MLB analyst since 2015 and was part of the “Sunday Night Baseball" booth for four seasons. Her roles with the network and the Mets had been under discussion since the end of last season.
“I’ve always prioritized my growth and these new opportunities will allow me to expand my broadcasting career while challenging me at the same time," Mendoza said in a statement. “Some of the best memories of my career have been with ”Sunday Night Baseball" and I will miss my time with our amazing crew, who have been like family."
Mendoza's dual roles had drawn attention and caused friction. The Los Angeles Dodgers banned her from their clubhouse last year once during the season and once during the postseason because of her position with the Mets. She also drew attention last month for saying on an ESPN show that pitcher Mike Fiers should have gone to Major League Baseball before he told a journalist that the Houston Astros had been using a camera to steal signs.
Commissioner Rob Manfred said during this week's owners meetings that he was not comfortable with Mendoza and former Boston Red Sox pitcher Pedro Martinez being both team employees and broadcasters.
“It's a topic that remains under discussion internally,” he said. "It caused a lot of complications, not just on this particular incident or comments, but in general.”