Rob Manfred was officially given a five-year term as the successor to commissioner Bud Selig today, Selig himself announced today (Associated Press link). Manfred was selected as the next MLB commissioner earlier this year, beating out runner-up candidate Tom Werner, though previous reports indicated that his initial term would be only three years.
Per the AP, Selig said that Manfred’s term was approved “unanimously, quietly and quickly” in a meeting today, which is “the way it should be,” he added. Among the tasks Manfred will face in the early stages of his term are improving the pace of play, assessing baseball’s instant replay system following its first year of implementation and addressing the stadium issues of both the A’s and Rays.
Manfred served as Major League Baseball’s vice president of labor relations before being named the league’s chief operating officer in 2013. The Harvard Law graduate was known to be Selig’s preferred successor prior to his election in August. Manfred has served as the head of labor negotiations for 19 years since the strike of 1994, and he was a key component in implementing baseball’s current drug testing system as well as negotiating the most recent collective bargaining agreement.