Acting Commissioner (1992–1998)
Selig became an increasingly vocal opponent of Commissioner Fay Vincent, and soon became the leader of a group of owners seeking his removal. Selig has never stated that the owners colluded, while Vincent has:The Union basically doesn’t trust the ownership because collusion was a $280 million theft by Selig and Jerry Reinsdorf of that money from the players. I mean, they rigged the signing of free agents. They got caught. They paid $280 million to the players. And I think that’s polluted labor relations in baseball ever since it happened. I think it’s the reason MLBPA executive director Donald Fehr has no trust in Selig. —Fay Vincent
Following an 18-9 no-confidence vote, Vincent resigned. Selig had by this time become chairman of the Executive Council of Major League Baseball, and as such became de facto acting commissioner.
His first major act was to institute the Wild Card and divisional playoff play, which has created much controversy amongst baseball fans. Those against the Wild Card see it as diminishing the importance of the pennant race and the regular season, with the true race often being for second rather than first place, while those in favor of it view it as an opportunity for teams to have a shot at the playoffs even when they have no chance of a first-place finish in their division, thus maintaining fan interest later in the season.
Selig suspended Cincinnati Reds owner Marge Schott for a year in 1993 for repeated racially insensitive and prejudicial remarks and actions. The same year, New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner was reinstated from a lifelong suspension that was instituted by Selig's predecessor Fay Vincent. Pete Rose has claimed that he applied for reinstatement over the years and received no such consideration. Rose, along with his close friend and former teammate Mike Schmidt (who is a strong supporter of Rose's reinstatement into baseball), met with Selig in 2002, where Rose privately admitted to Selig (two years before going public with his admission) about betting on baseball. Bud Selig was a close friend of the late Bart Giamatti, who was the commissioner when Rose was first banned from the sport in 1989.
As acting commissioner, Selig represented MLB during the 1994 players strike and cancelled the World Series, marking the first time the annual event had not been staged since 1904.
Read more about this topic: Bud Selig
Famous quotes containing the word acting:
“It especially helps if you know that were all faking our adulthoodeven your parents and their parents. Beneath these adult trappingsin our president, in our parents, in you and melurk the emotions of a child. If we know that only about ourselves, we become infantile; if we understand that about everybody, then we have nothing to be ashamed ofunless, of course, we go around acting like a child and expecting everyone else to act like grownups.”
—Frank Pittman (20th century)