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Bud Selig

Heads Major League Executive Council

In September 1992, when Fay Vincent resigned under pressure as baseball commissioner, Selig's fellow club owners named him chairman of the Major League Executive Council. Since the Major League Agreement gives the Executive Council the right to regulate baseball in the absence of a commissioner, Selig became the defacto commissioner. In his new post, he pressed for some sort of revenue-sharing arrangement under which the larger, more profitable teams, such as the New York Yankees, would help to subsidize smaller franchises, such as Selig's own Milwaukee Brewers. Selig also called for a cap on player salaries and an end to arbitration to settle salary disputes. His support of these issues endeared him to many of his fellow owners but won him no friends among the players.

Less than two years after taking over as acting commissioner, Selig faced his first big challenge in the form of a players strike in 1994. After the players struck on August 12, Selig worked hard to promote owner unity. As the strike dragged on into early September with no end in sight, Selig cancelled the rest of the season, including the World Series. Not until the beginning of the 1995 season was the strike ended, and then only by a court injunction ordering baseball to go back to its previous collective bargaining agreement while negotiations continued. A new contract was eventually hammered out, but the bitterness between owners and players lingered long after the settlement. And for Selig, the 1994 strike signaled an end to the two-year honeymoon he'd enjoyed with the media, which now turned on him with a vengeance. Pete Pascarelli of Sporting News wrote that Selig was "willing to crush the game into an unrecognizable mess," adding that baseball was "on the brink of utter ruin under his watch."


1934 Born July 30 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
1956 Earns B.A. degree from University of Wisconsin in Madison
1956-58 Serves in U.S. Army
1969 Makes unsuccessful bid to bring the Chicago White Sox to Milwaukee
1970 The Brewers, an organization headed by Selig, acquires Seattle Pilots for $10.8 million
1977 Marries Suzanne Lappin Steinman
1992 Elected chairman of major league baseball's executive council, effectively becoming interim chairman
1998 Formally elected baseball commissioner by club owners

Awards and Accomplishments

1959 Named president of Selig Executive Leasing Company
1978 Named UPI's Major League Executive of the Year
1981 Received International B'nai B'rith Sportsman of the Year Award
1983 Named Sportsman of the Year by U.S. Olympic Committee
1989 Received August A. Busch Jr. Award for service to baseball
1994 Named Wisconsin's Top Sports Personality of Past 25 Years
2002 Engineered settlement averting players' strike

Additional topics

Famous Sports StarsBaseballBud Selig Biography - Born In Milwaukee, Seeks Ball Club For Milwaukee, Heads Major League Executive Council, Chronology - CONTACT INFORMATION