By Scoop Fox
The baseball world suffered the loss of one of its bright lights. After a 15-month battle with an inoperable brain tumor, the Executive Director of the Major League Baseball (MLB) Players’ Association, Michael Weiner, passed away this past Wednesday night at the age of 51.
For those who are not familiar with Michael, he first join the MLB Players Association back in 1988 as a staff attorney. He actually played a key role during the ’94-95 MLB strike as a junior attorney and helped in the ’97 MLB negotiations. He then took the role of general counsel back in 2004 before moving up to the role of MLB Players Association Union President from Don Fehr back in 2009. Most players described him as laid back and casual in style compared to his predecessor. Nevertheless, Michael stood by his players and fought for their rights and best interest.
Now most people would just assume that his only legacy was that of the Biogenesis scandal that involved the likes of Detroit Tigers SS Johnny Peralta, Milwaukee Brewers OF Ryan Braun, and New York Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez. But in fact Michael Weiner was responsible for keeping the peace going on in MLB while professional sports was rocked by a players stoppage in the NFL in 2010 and in the NBA in 2011. This was because Michael was able to successfully negotiate a 5-year extension back in November 2011 that ran all the way into December 2016. The extension included human growth hormone blood testing, restraints on bonuses for amateur draft picks and international signings, as well as restoring salary arbitration for players that lost it during the 1980s.
Michael Weiner is survived by his wife, Diane Margolin, and his three daughters, Margie, Grace, and Sally. Former MLB Player Tony Clark will assume the role as interim director.
This is Scoop Fox signing off.
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