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Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig will formally announce his retirement on Thursday. The retirement will go into effect in January 2015.
Selig, 79, became interim commissioner in 1992 after Fay Vincent was voted out. He became the permanent commissioner in 1998. Selig has hinted at retirement before. He announced in 2006 that he would retire after the 2009 season. Instead, he signed a three-year contract in 2008 and said he would retire after 2012, but a new two-year contract followed, according to CBS Sports.
MLB has grown substantially under Selig. During his tenure, the wild card system, interleague play, and instant replay were introduced. MLB is now a $9 billion industry, according to USA Today.
There have also been multiple labor battles between the owners and the players union. One of those battle resulted in the cancellation of the 1994 World Series. Selig has also presided over baseball’s Steroid Era. The Steroid Era led to the toughest PED testing system among the four major sports.
MLB has 15-16 months to find Selig’s replacement. Former Chicago Cubs, Minnesota Twins, and Baltimore Orioles executive Andy MacPhail, MLB executive Joe Torre, and New York Mets GM Sandy Alderson are rumored to be possible replacements for Selig.