SBD/September 4, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Selig Discusses His Historical Legacy, Biogenesis Scandal In SI.com Q&A

Selig is convinced he will be stepping down after the '14 season
MLB Commissioner Bud Selig discussed various MLB issues in a Q&A with Tom Verducci of SI.com. Selig talked about whether he "intends to follow through on retirement this time, about charges of being slow to respond to steroids in baseball and then overreaching when confronted with the Biogenesis scandal, and about how his commissionership should be judged." The following are excerpts from the interview:

Q: Your contract ends after the 2014 season. Can you say with certainty that it will in fact be your final season as commissioner?
Selig: Yes, I can. ... I am convinced -- I think it's Jan. 24, 2015 that is the actual date -- that I will be done. I believe that and I think everybody now understands that I will be done.

Q: Are you aware of any search committee or process that is underway to find a replacement?
Selig: There isn't, but there's time for that. Those things don't really take all that long, and I will set up the right procedures at the right time. There's really no need for that right now.

Q: Your last year-and-half to two years have been especially busy. You added the second wild card, decided on expanded replay and of course the Biogenesis investigation. ... Is there any validity in the charge that you were overreaching in the investigation?
Selig: Not in my opinion. Not in the opinion of anybody around me. No. In fact, I think that's so bizarre I'm not even sure I want to comment. ... I did what I thought was in the best interest of the sport. And for somebody to think that's overreaching, they don't know what the facts are, they don't know what the evidence is, so how would they know? How would they know?

Q: How would you describe your office's relationship with the union these days?
Selig: I think it's okay. Rob [Manfred, MLB Exec VP/Economics & League Affairs] assures me that it is okay and I believe that it is.

Q: Are you happy with competitive balance?
Selig: I'm proud of it. Very proud. ... I think all the economic changes, everything in life that we've done ... so you have Oakland today and Pittsburgh and Cincinnati and St. Louis and on and on ... Yeah, we're doing great.

Q: How would you like people to remember your tenure?
Selig: It's hard for somebody to say about themselves, "Well, this is what I hope people remember." But I would say this to you: if you look at where we were in 1992 in terms of attendance, revenue, popularity, game itself, competitive balance, labor peace, go on and on, I think the last 21, 22 years of baseball have been really remarkably good. But I've got to let others draw those conclusions (SI.com, 9/3).
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