Federal probe against former Yankees player and coach following Instagram post

Ex-Yankees player and current Colorado hitting coach Hensley Meulens

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Hensley Meulens, a former player for the Yankees and the current hitting coach for the Colorado Rockies, finds himself in potentially hot water after a social media misstep.

Meulens, a popular figure known by his nickname “Bam-Bam,” recently shared a video on Instagram that has since been deleted. The video depicted the ex-Yankees player and coach in the cockpit of a team charter flight from Denver to Toronto, seemingly at the controls while the actual pilot was present. The lighthearted clip showed Meulens playfully mimicking steering motions and joking about landing the aircraft.

However, the video sparked a serious response. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) launched an investigation against the ex-Yankees player, citing concerns about an unauthorized person entering the flight deck. United Airlines, the operator of the flight, expressed alarm, highlighting a breach of safety protocols with an unauthorized individual on the flight deck, even if the autopilot was engaged. As a result, the pilots involved have been suspended pending the investigation’s conclusion.

“We are not at liberty to discuss details of ongoing investigations,” a Rockies spokesperson said when contacted by The Denver Post.


Relationship with the Yankees

Meulens, a native of Curacao, played seven seasons in Major League Baseball between 1989 and 1997. A significant portion of his career, five seasons, was spent with the New York Yankees. During his time with the Yankees, he played in 159 games, batting .221 with a .633 OPS and recording 12 home runs and 46 RBIs.

Meulens’ journey in professional baseball spans multiple decades, encompassing playing and coaching roles with various teams. His major league debut came on August 23, 1989, when he donned the iconic pinstripes of the New York Yankees. Despite being part of the Yankees’ roster for the entirety of the 1991 season, Meulens found himself platooning in left field with Mel Hall, and his hitting struggles, including a high strikeout rate, prevented him from securing a permanent spot in the lineup. His tenure with the Yankees was marked by sporadic late-season call-ups in 1992 and 1993.

Seeking new opportunities, Meulens ventured to Japan, where he played from 1994 to 1996, honing his skills and gaining valuable experience. His return to Major League Baseball came in 1997 with the Montreal Expos and later in 1998 with the Arizona Diamondbacks. After his playing days concluded, Meulens embarked on a coaching career, starting with the Bluefield Orioles in 2003.

In a full-circle moment, Meulens found himself back with the Yankees organization in 2022, serving as an assistant hitting coach. However, his tenure in New York was short-lived, as the Colorado Rockies announced his hiring as their hitting coach for the 2023 season on November 7, 2022, opening a new chapter in his Baseball journey.

The Colorado Rockies have refrained from offering detailed comments on the situation, instead deferring to the ongoing investigation.

Meulens transitioned into coaching after his playing career ended. Notably, he was considered for the Yankees’ managerial position in 2017 but ultimately took on an assistant coaching role. His coaching career has included brief stints with the Mets as their bench coach in 2020 and the Yankees as an assistant hitting coach in 2022. He assumed his current role as the hitting coach for the Colorado Rockies in 2023.

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

One thought on “Federal probe against former Yankees player and coach following Instagram post

  1. Bam Bam Meulens always seemed like a happy, fun-loving man with whom you’d like to share a few drinks or invite to a friendly all-night poker game.

    Hopefully, Bam Bam just gets a warning to never do anything that foolish ever again.

    As for the crew, they should get a short suspension for doing something that foolhardy. It seems likely that the crew had gotten to know Meulens well from previous flights, and they apparently viewed him as a friend, so the repeated “9-11” reference in the article (i.e., “Ever heard of 9-11” from an X tweet) was unwarranted & stupid.

    Btw, “RalphatTahoe,” the writer of that X tweet, “Ever heard of 9-11” is a question & requires a question mark, not a period. So, if you’re going to insult Meulens & the crew for a foolish mistake, “Ralph T,” you might want to avoid making a foolish mistake on your part in the Most Impactful Statement in Your Silly Tweet.

    Yes, it was foolish of the crew to let Meulens sit at, but not operate, the controls, but the really stupid thing was that they filmed something the crew had to know was a violation of FAA rules. (It’s a shame bank robbers & criminals, in general, aren’t so obliging.)

    Hopefully, no one loses their job over this foolish mistake, and they all realize they carried friendship much too far.

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