Bill Neukom, the chief executive officer and managing general partner of the San Francisco Giants, will not return in that role in 2012, according to the San Jose Mercury News. Neukom took over the role for the Giants after the 2008 season, after which the Giants went from a 90-loss team to a contender and a World Series championship, and it appears that the former Microsoft counsel isn't leaving on his own terms.
From the Mercury News:
Neukom's own falling-out with the Giants' executive committee, say the baseball sources, began over how to spend the additional millions that flowed into team coffers following the World Series championship ...
Neukom, it is said, believed that this was his money to spend as he saw fit -- and he did so, to increase payroll and buy new technology for the baseball department, among other expenditures. Instead, the executive committee allegedly wanted the money to be put in a "rainy day fund" for use in leaner times.
While that doesn't bode well for the Giants staying near the top of the payroll charts, it should be noted that they were at the top with the help of Barry Zito, Mark DeRosa, Aubrey Huff, Aaron Rowand, and Miguel Tejada. So maybe a reduction in payroll isn't automatically a bad thing. Still, with Matt Cain a free agent after 2012, and Tim Lincecum a free agent after 2013, the Giants will have to commit some serious cash to keep the band together, and it seems as if Neukom was at odds with his fellow owners on how best to capitalize on the Giants' championship run.
Giants president and COO Larry Baer will assume the position vacated by Neukom, according to the Mercury News.