Robert D. "Rob" Manfred, Jr. (born September 28, 1958) is an American lawyer and business executive who is the tenth and current Commissioner of Baseball. He previously served as the Chief Operating Officer of Major League Baseball and succeeded Bud Selig as Commissioner on January 25, 2015.
Early life and career
Manfred was born on September 28, 1958 in Rome, New York. He attended Rome Free Academy and graduated in 1976. Manfred enrolled at Le Moyne College from 1976 through 1978 before transferring to Cornell University. He graduated from Cornell's School of Industrial and Labor Relations and Harvard Law School.
After law school, he clerked for Judge Joseph L. Tauro of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts. He became a partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, focusing on labor and employment law.
Major League Baseball
In 1987, Manfred began working with Major League Baseball (MLB) during collective bargaining. During the 1994–95 MLB strike, he served as outside counsel for the owners. He joined MLB on a full-time basis in 1998, serving as the Executive Vice President of Economics and League Affairs. Manfred negotiated MLB's first drug testing agreement with the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) in 2002, and represented MLB in negotiations with the MLBPA when forming new collective bargaining agreements in 2002, 2006 and 2011. In 2013, Manfred led MLB's investigation of the Biogenesis scandal.
At the end of the 2013 season, Commissioner of Baseball Bud Selig promoted Manfred to chief operating officer of MLB. The position had been vacant since Bob DuPuy resigned in 2010. Following the announcement of Selig's retirement, effective after the 2014 season, Manfred became a finalist to succeed him as Commissioner.
On August 14, 2014, MLB owners elected Manfred to succeed Selig, beating Boston Red Sox chairman Tom Werner and MLB executive vice president of business Tim Brosnan. Manfred assumed office on January 25, 2015. He stated that his primary goals as commissioner were youth outreach, embracing technology, quickening the pace of play, strengthening player relations, and creating a more unified business operation.
As commissioner, Manfred instituted rules before the start of the 2015 season to address the pace of the game, including having batters remain in the batters box and the installation of time clocks to limit the time spent around commercial breaks.
Growing up in Upstate New York, Manfred was a fan of the New York Yankees. His father led the Rome division of Revere Copper and Brass, while his mother was a schoolteacher. He has an older sister and a younger brother.
Manfred is married and has four children. He serves as a Board member at Catholic School of Holy Child in Rye, New York. His daughter Megan Manfred married Timothy Petrella of Minnetonka, Minnesota, son of the president of UnitedHealthcare Community and State, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Sleepy Hollow, New York. His son Michael married Ashley Allen at Catholic Church of the Transfiguration in Tarrytown, New York.