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SBD/October 25, 2013/Leagues and Governing BodiesPrint All
MLB Commissioner Bud Selig Thursday night presented retired Yankees P Mariano Rivera with the Commissioner’s Historic Achievement Award, calling him “the face of baseball for this generation.” “He did it with so much class, dignity and honor,” Selig said. “He’s represented the game so beautifully. ... In the life of the commissioner, there are lot of good days, bad days. But this is without question a very special day.” Rivera joked that after this year’s emotional farewell tour he was going to attempt a repeat next year in the National League. Rivera is the award’s 13th recipient. Selig also addressed several other topics prior to Game 2 of the World Series. Expanded instant replay, based on a manager’s challenge system, remains firmly on track to be implemented for the ’14 season. Selig acknowledged that had the system been in place for the reversed out call in Game 1 Wednesday night, “it would have saved a lot of time.” "I watched the play right away, and it was obvious what happened,” he said. “I give the umpires a lot of credit, though. I really do. They made the right decision,” he said. Selig, who met with the league’s bankers earlier in the day Thursday, admitted he told that group three years ago he was firmly against expanded replay, only to now be a staunch advocate for it. “Life is nothing if not a series of adjustments,” he said. “And this is an adjustment I’ve made.” Selig again expressed satisfaction with the ongoing economic health of the league, pointing in part to attendance, overall revenues, MLBAM and MLB Network. This year’s attendance of more than 74 million, while down slightly from ’12, was the league’s sixth best total ever. “We went over 74 million, which five or 10 years ago, I would have been dancing on the table, and you don’t want to see me dancing on the table,” he said. MLB actually surpassed that total each of the ’05-08 seasons, and then again in ’12-13. Meanwhile, the Red Sox-Cardinals World Series matchup is the first in 14 years with teams with the best records in their respective leagues. “That’s a tribute to our system. I knew this from my own personal experience running the Brewers. It is hard getting here, and it’s hard coming back.”