Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig will resign in Janaury of 2015, according to several US media reports Thursday, ending a reign of more than 20 years that began in 1992.
ESPN, USA Today and CBS Sports all said Selig would announce later Thursday that he will step down in 16 months. Selig had already said two years ago that the 2014 season would be his last in charge.
Selig, 79, was owner of the Milwaukee Brewers before he took over as the interim commissioner in 1992 after owners voted out Fay Vincent and was named to the job on a permanent basis in 1998.
Major League Baseball has grown into a $9 billion business during Selig’s tenure, but has also been stained by doping scandals, including one this year that prompted Selig to impose a 211-game doping ban upon New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez, who is playing as he appeals the suspension.
Selig had fights between owners and players, the most brutal of which saw the cancellation of the 1994 World Series.
US lawmakers famously criticized Selig for most of a 12-hour hearing into steroids in baseball, a stinging rebuke that led Selig to toughen Major League Baseball’s anti-doping policy to the toughest of the major North American sports leagues, who do not follow World Anti-Doping Agency guidelines.
[Image via Agence France-Presse]