Selig to take top job, report says Announcement may be made by next month

June 18, 1998|By NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE

The search for a baseball commissioner is over. It did not stray an inch from where it began.

Bud Selig, who has served in the role of commissioner for nearly six years without having the title, has decided to accept the job he had resisted taking, several people in ownership and high-ranking positions in Major League Baseball said yesterday.

Two people, one a high-ranking official in baseball and one who is not in baseball but has close contacts with people in the sport's hierarchy, said an announcement could be made by the All-Star Game, which is July 7. An owner said it could be forthcoming in two to four weeks.

"It's one of the great anticlimaxes of all time," one former official said.

Selig, who will be 64 next month, has said for several years that he did not want to be commissioner. But he never said he would flatly refuse to accept the position. Overwhelming support from owners for him to take the job made it possible for him to agree to take it.

"An almost unified ownership came to him and said you've got to do it; you're the only one," one official said.

Several people said only two or three owners oppose the idea of Selig as commissioner. All of them named Jerry Reinsdorf of the Chicago White Sox as one. Others identified were Peter Magowan of the San Francisco Giants and The Tribune Co., owner of the Chicago Cubs.

Pub Date: 6/18/98

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