Back in August, with Bud Selig's retirement closing in on us, a new commissioner had to be voted on. Rob Manfred had been Chief Operating Officer, and served as the right hand of Selig. So when the vote came down, and Manfred was announced as the new Commissioner, it was a no brainer.
January 25th was Manfred's first official day as Commissioner of the MLB. He started it by sending a note out to all MLB fans. You can read the full note HERE. Manfred made clear his objectives as the Commissioner.
"My top priority is to bring more people into our game -- at all levels and from all communities. Specifically, I plan to make the game more accessible to those in underserved areas, especially in the urban areas where fields and infrastructure are harder to find."
"Another priority for me is to continue to modernize the game without interfering with its history and traditions."
Great! Both ideologies that are important for the game. Expanding upon programs in urban communities that introduce the game to children who would otherwise be unable to play is important. I look forward to see his plans for this come to fruition. And the modernization of the game is great! I know some baseball purist are turning up their noses at the thought. Times change, the games should change to adapt.There are a lot of concerns we have as fans. Modernizing the game creates plausible solutions to those issues.
Hey, I'll be the first person to say I was not a fan of Selig, and Manfred it not free of guilt. However, I'd like to believe that Manfred has some individuality and decides not to follow too close to the path that Selig has laid out. I'd like to give Manfred the benefit of the doubt.
Being the commissioner of the MLB can be taxing, and I wish him loads of success. There is much to be done to fix the state of the game, and the relationship between fan and based commissioner. Grind it! Do not disappoint.