Jimmie Lee Solomon, who once oversaw all of Major League Baseball's on-field operations, is now out at MLB.
Two baseball sources confirmed that Solomon, whose current position was executive vice president of business development, had been fired by MLB after a 21-year career there. When reached by telephone Tuesday evening, Solomon declined to comment.
One MLB source said Solomon's firing became known on Monday, though he said no official announcement had been made to employees.
(UPDATE: On Thursday evening, MLB announced in a press release that Solomon had resigned from his position. As part of the statement, commissioner Bud Selig thanked Solomon "for his 20-plus years of service" and "contributions he has made in a number of different areas throughout the game.")
Solomon’s dismissal comes nearly two years to the day after he was reassigned from his post as executive vice president of baseball operations, in which he oversaw all on-field activities of MLB—including security and umpiring. He had held the position since replacing Sandy Alderson in 2005, and was reassigned by commissioner Bud Selig after an uproar over the poor quality of umpiring and one week after umpire Jim Joyce blew a call that cost then-Tigers pitcher Armando Gallaraga a perfect game.
After his reassignment, Solomon had much less responsibility, chiefly overseeing MLB's relationship with the minor leagues, its Urban Youth Academies and the Civil Rights Game. Even so, those contacted by Baseball America said Solomon’s dismissal comes as a surprise. Last year Solomon helped negotiate a six-year extension of the Professional Baseball Agreement with Minor League Baseball, keeping the relationship between the majors and minors in tact through the 2020 season.
Solomon joined MLB in 1991 as director of minor league operations and steadily climbed baseball’s corporate ladder. He played a key role in many of MLB’s recent diversity initiatives, including the development of the Urban Youth Academies and the growth of the Civil Rights Game, and helped add the Futures Game to baseball’s all-star celebration. Before joining MLB, Solomon spent 10 years as a partner in the Washington, D.C., office of the Baker & Hostetler law firm and primarily served corporate and sports industry clients.