Marvin Miller, Union Leader Who Brought Free Agency To Baseball, Dies | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

Marvin Miller, Union Leader Who Brought Free Agency To Baseball, Dies

Marvin Miller, "arguably the most significant figure in 20th century baseball" according to Morning Edition commentator Frank Deford, has died.

The former head of the Major League Baseball Players Association was 95.

His death was confirmed to The Associated Press by a daughter and to USA Today by the union. According to the AP, Miller was diagnosed with liver cancer this summer.

As Frank said on Morning Edition in December 2010, Miller was "certainly no less important to the national pastime than was Jackie Robinson or Branch Rickey or Babe Ruth. For that matter, because Miller outsmarted the entire establishment, giving baseball players free agency and abolishing the illegal reserve clause, he not only turned the business of baseball on its ear but effectively overhauled all professional sports in the United States."

Miller should be in baseball's Hall of Fame, Frank says.

USA Today reminds us that:

"Miller negotiated the first collective bargaining agreement in sports history in 1968, and in 1974, successfully ended the reserve clause, enabling players to achieve free agency after six years of service. He also raised the minimum salary from $6,000 to $10,000. Today, the minimum salary is worth $480,000. Miller also bargained for salary arbitration, which has been responsible for salaries to soar for players before entering free agency. Miller led the union through five collective bargaining agreements during his tenure."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

The World Music Education of Philip Glass

In his new memoir, Music Without Words, the composer explains how a chance meeting with Ravi Shankar sparked a fascination with the cultures of the world and their music.
NPR

PepsiCo Swaps Diet Drink's Aspartame For Other Artificial Sweeteners

The company says Diet Pepsi consumers are concerned about aspartame. But the Food and Drug Administration has long affirmed that the sweetener is safe in amounts commonly used by beverage companies.
NPR

Surgeon General Vivek Murthy On Gun Control, Vaccines And Science

Surgeon General Vivek Murthy was officially sworn in this week. His confirmation was held up for more than a year because of comments he made about gun violence. Murthy talks with NPR's Scott Simon.
NPR

As Health Apps Hop On The Apple Watch, Privacy Will Be Key

The notion of receiving nutrition advice from artificial intelligence on your wrist may seem like science fiction. But health developers are betting this kind of behavior will become the norm.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.