Owners extend Selig#039;s contract

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 20, 2004

PHILADELPHIA - If Bud Selig wants to be baseball's commissioner for life, owners probably approve.

''At this point, yes,'' the New York Mets' Fred Wilpon said Thursday after Selig's term was extended three years through 2009. ''God willing, Bud's health will be good. His own interest may change. But right now I'd say yes.''

If Selig serves out the new term, he will have held the job for 17 years - the second-longest tenure behind Kenesaw Mountain Landis, who became the first commissioner in 1920 and held the job until he died in 1944.

Email newsletter signup

The 70-year-old Selig, whose family controls the Milwaukee Brewers, became acting commissioner in 1992 after leading the group that forced Fay Vincent's resignation. Selig was given a five-year term in July 1998, and three years later owners extended it through 2006.

Under Selig, baseball expanded the playoffs from four to eight teams in 1995, started interleague play in 1997, vastly increased revenue sharing among the clubs, got players to agree to a luxury tax on high-payroll clubs. Two years ago, players agreed to a labor contract without a work stoppage for the first time since 1970.