Skip to content

Bud Selig’s official statement on the passing of Marvin Miller

Nov 27, 2012, 12:30 PM EDT

Bud Selig AP AP

The Commissioner’s Office just released the following statement from Bud Selig regarding Marvin Miller’s passing:

“Marvin Miller was a highly accomplished executive and a very influential figure in baseball history.  He made a distinct impact on this sport, which is reflected in the state of the game today, and surely the Major League players of the last half-century have greatly benefited from his contributions.  On behalf of Major League Baseball and the 30 Clubs, I extend my deepest condolences to Marvin’s family, friends and colleagues.”

That’s nice enough, but contrast it with the warm statement Selig gave about another 95 year-old who recently passed away:

“Lee MacPhail was one of the great executives in Baseball history and a Hall of Famer in every sense, both personally and professionally.  I had great admiration for Lee as American League President, and he was respected and liked by everyone with whom he came in contact. His hallmarks were dignity, common sense and humility. He was not only a remarkable league executive, but was a true Baseball man as is evidenced by his brilliant leadership of the storied New York Yankees and Baltimore Orioles franchises.  Lee always put the interests of the sport first and through his love of the game taught all of us to cherish it in every way.  Major League Baseball and all of our Clubs feel a great sense of loss today, and I send my deepest condolences to one of the first families of the national pastime.”

Obviously it’s not a competition and I in no way wish to make some rigorous comparison between Miller and MacPhail as human beings. Apart from a single phone call with Miller a couple of years ago I did not know either of them from Adam. But there’s a definitely chilly feel to the Miller statement, no? And a brevity? Moose Skowron got 55 more words from the commissioner than the guy who freakin’ transformed baseball.

To be fair, one is understandably more likely to say warm things about someone one knows better and with whom one has had more personal interaction like Selig had with MacPhail. And the fact that there is some personal reaction evident in these statements is evidence that guys like Selig put themselves into their work fully and with no small amount of emotion. Which is nothing but admirable in my view. Certainly beats a boilerplate tribute.

But even 30 years after Miller left the scene as active union chief, one gets the impression that Selig — or whoever at Major League Baseball actually wrote the Miller statement — has some hard feelings over years of battle with the MLBPA.  And even if that’s understandable, it’s still fascinating all the same. If, for no other reason, than it makes you realize that even if the wars between the owners and the union feel like ancient history to some of us, it’s not so ancient history to many of the men who still rule this game.

Latest Posts
  1. Garrett Richards suffers ugly left knee injury

    Aug 20, 2014, 8:43 PM EDT

    garrett richards getty Getty Images

    The Angels just got dealt a potentially-major blow. Garrett Richards — who has suddenly developed into an ace this season at age 26 — was taken off on a stretcher Wednesday evening at Boston’s Fenway Park after suffering what looked to be a very serious right knee injury in the bottom of the second inning of his start against the host Red Sox.

  2. Video: Billy Hamilton pulls off heads-up double play

    Aug 20, 2014, 8:15 PM EDT

    billy hamilton getty Getty Images

    Watch as Reds outfielder Billy Hamilton pulls off a sensational double play Wednesday in St. Louis …

  3. Giants win protest, will complete rain-halted game at Wrigley Field on Thursday afternoon

    Aug 20, 2014, 7:39 PM EDT

    cubs tarp getty Getty Images

    A sudden torrential downpour Tuesday night in Chicago — and complications with applying the tarp — left Wrigley Field unplayable even after four hours of maintenance by the grounds crew, so the Cubs were awarded a 2-0 victory over the visiting Giants because that was the score when was play was halted after the top of the fifth inning. The Giants protested, and it actually worked …

  4. Padres reinstate Cameron Maybin from suspension

    Aug 20, 2014, 7:14 PM EDT

    cameron maybin getty Getty Images

    Padres center fielder Cameron Maybin has officially been reinstated from his 25-game amphetamine suspension.

  5. Masahiro Tanaka throws all his pitches in bullpen session

    Aug 20, 2014, 6:21 PM EDT

    masahiro tanaka getty Getty Images

    Yankees ace Masahiro Tanaka was diagnosed in early July with a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow — the injury that almost always leads to Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery — but he’s trying the rest and rehab route first and it’s actually going pretty smoothly so far.

  6. Rays activate reigning Rookie of the Year Wil Myers

    Aug 20, 2014, 5:17 PM EDT

    Wil Myers AP

    Wil Myers is off the disabled list after missing nearly three months with a fractured right wrist and the reigning Rookie of the Year winner is back in the Rays’ lineup.

  7. Carlos Beltran scratched from Yankees’ lineup with more elbow problems

    Aug 20, 2014, 4:46 PM EDT

    Carols Beltran Getty Images

    Over the weekend Carlos Beltran was cleared to play the outfield for the first time since May, but now his season-long elbow problems have returned and the 37-year-old has been scratched from the Yankees’ lineup.

  8. Nick Swisher undergoes surgery on both knees

    Aug 20, 2014, 4:20 PM EDT

    Oakland Athletics v Cleveland Indians Getty Images

    Swisher turns 34 years old in November and has two seasons remaining on his contract, at $15 million per year.

  9. Heyman: Jon Lester unlikely to sign with the Sox this offseason

    Aug 20, 2014, 3:30 PM EDT

    Jon Lester AP

    He’s going to have his pick of landing spots, and Boston is just one of a zillion teams who would like him.

  10. Pirates get Gerrit Cole back in the rotation

    Aug 20, 2014, 3:15 PM EDT

    gerrit cole throwing getty Getty Images

    Gerrit Cole’s lengthy minor-league rehab assignment is over and the Pirates have activated the former No. 1 overall pick from the disabled list for tonight’s start against the Braves.

  11. Royals might actually know what they are doing

    Aug 20, 2014, 2:58 PM EDT

    gordonholland

    Joe Posnanski says the Royals’ plan is finally falling into place and has their fans believing they can get back to the glory days of the 1970s.

  12. Derek Holland: “I feel like I’m ready, but that’s up to them”

    Aug 20, 2014, 2:50 PM EDT

    derek holland getty Getty Images

    Derek Holland’s minor-league rehab assignment has been a mixed bag, but after allowing four runs in his latest outing the Rangers left-hander proclaimed himself ready to rejoin the rotation.

  13. The Cubs are giving rain checks to fans at last night’s game. That was not postponed.

    Aug 20, 2014, 2:44 PM EDT

    cubs logo

    A nice gesture and some good customer service by the Cubs.

  14. HBT Daily: You had ONE JOB

    Aug 20, 2014, 1:31 PM EDT

    Wrigley Tarp Getty Images

    Jenna and I talk about the tarp problem at Wrigley Field last night

  15. John Lackey gives Pat Neshek a ball autographed by Babe Ruth in exchange for his jersey number

    Aug 20, 2014, 1:03 PM EDT

    John Lackey Getty Images

    A long and rich tradition of giving up expensive things for a jersey number continues.

  16. Spotted at the Des Moines airport: 1,023 career homers

    Aug 20, 2014, 12:48 PM EDT

    logo-dsm-airport

    No biggie, just two 42-year-old should-be Hall of Famers with a combined 20 All-Star game appearances and 1,023 career homers running into each other in the Des Moines, Iowa airport.

  17. Rockies consider September call-up for Rafael Betancourt after Tommy John surgery recovery

    Aug 20, 2014, 12:16 PM EDT

    San Diego Padres v Colorado Rockies Getty Images

    When the Rockies declined their $4.25 million option on Rafael Betancourt and re-signed him to a minor-league deal the assumption was that he wouldn’t be a factor this season following Tommy John elbow surgery last August.

  18. Carlos Gonzalez may miss the start of spring training

    Aug 20, 2014, 11:51 AM EDT

    carlos gonzalez rockies getty Getty Images

    Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez underwent season-ending knee surgery Monday and now there’s some doubt whether he’ll be fully recovered for the beginning of spring training.

  19. Hector Sanchez suffers second concussion while rehabbing from first concussion

    Aug 20, 2014, 11:19 AM EDT

    Hector Sanchez AP

    Sanchez’s rehab assignment was previously put on hold when he took a foul ball off the mask two weeks ago and that same thing happened Saturday at Triple-A.

  20. Jim Henderson undergoes shoulder “clean up” surgery

    Aug 20, 2014, 10:47 AM EDT

    Jim Henderson Getty Getty Images

    Milwaukee had already shut down Jim Henderson for the season with shoulder problems and now the Brewers announced that the 31-year-old reliever will undergo a “clean up” surgery on his labrum and rotator cuff.

Featured video

Who's to blame for Cubs tarp fiasco?
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. M. Cuddyer (3202)
  2. R. Castillo (3162)
  3. W. Myers (2425)
  4. M. Fiers (2357)
  5. A. Garcia (2348)
  1. J. Werth (2330)
  2. A. McCutchen (2269)
  3. Y. Molina (2263)
  4. C. Gonzalez (2233)
  5. K. Bryant (2221)