Text of the agreement between Baseball Commissioner Fay Vincent and New York Yankees principal owner George Steinbrenner:
On March 20, 1990, the Commissioner of Baseball instituted an investigation of George M. Steinbrenner III, the principal owner and general partner of the New York Yankees Baseball Club, concerning allegations that Mr. Steinbrenner engaged in conduct not in the best interests of Baseball in violation of Major League Rule 21.
The Commissioner engaged a Special Counsel to conduct a full, fair and confidential inquiry of the allegations against Mr. Steinbrenner. Mr. Steinbrenner was given notice of the allegations and he and his counsel were generally apprised of the nature and progress of the investigation.
On June 4, 1990, the Commissioner wrote to Mr. Steinbrenner to advise him of the various issues that, in his judgment, had been raised by the investigation. The Commissioner conducted a hearing into this matter on July 5 and 6, 1990.
The Commissioner, recognizing the benefits to Baseball from a resolution of this matter, orders and directs that Mr. Steinbrenner be subject to the following sanctions, and Mr. Steinbrenner, recognizing the sole and exclusive authority of the Commissioner and recognizing the benefits to Baseball from a resolution of this matter without further proceedings, agrees to accept the following sanctions imposed by the Commissioner:
1. Mr. Steinbrenner recognizes, agrees and submits to the sole and exclusive jurisdiction of the Commissioner pursuant to the Major League Agreement, including but not limited to Articles I and VII.
2. Mr. Steinbrenner acknowledges and accepts the findings of the Decision to which this Agreement is attached and, specifically, that his conduct as described in the Decision was not in the best interests of Baseball. Mr. Steinbrenner further accepts the sanctions imposed on him by the Commissioner and agrees not to challenge the sanctions in court or otherwise. He also agrees he will not institute any legal proceedings of any nature against the Commissioner or any of his representatives, either Major League or any Major League Club relating to this matter.
3. On or before August 20, 1990, Mr. Steinbrenner will resign as General Partner of the New York Yankees; within twelve months after that date, he will reduce his ownership interest to less than 50 percent by transfer through sale, gift or otherwise, subject to all necessary approvals by the Commissioner, the American League and the National League. The Commissioner will approve any transfer to any member of the Steinbrenner family.
4. On or before August 20, 1990, consistent with the terms of the New York Yankees Limited Partnership Agreement and subject to the subsequent approval of the Major League Clubs, a new General Partner will be appointed for the New York Yankees. The Commissioner will approve the appointment of either of Mr. Steinbrenner's sons as general partner.
5. Any of Mr. Steinbrenner's family members who become involved in the operations of the New York Yankees or become a General Partner of the New York Yankees shall be bound by the terms of the Supplemental Order governing the conduct of New York Yankees officials, which is attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference.
6. Effective August 20, 1990, Mr. Steinbrenner will be treated, for all purposes, as if he were on the Ineligible List (although he will not actually be placed on the Ineligible List). Accordingly, until further notice from the Commissioner, Mr. Steinbrenner shall not (a) visit or be physically present in the clubhouse, offices, owners box, or press box at Yankee Stadium or the Yankees' spring training facility, or any other area not generally open to the public at either location, without the prior approval of the Commissioner, or the clubhouse, offices or press box at any other Major League Club; or (b) associate or communicate with any Major League Club (including the New York Yankees) or its personnel or any person having business or financial dealings with the New York Yankees, in connection with any matter involving the New York Yankees or Baseball.
7. The prohibitions enumerated in paragraph 6, above, shall not be revoked or amended without the prior written approval of the Commissioner.
8. Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph 6, it is recognized that circumstances may arise involving material and extraordinary financial or business affairs of the New York Yankees in which Mr. Steinbrenner may feel his participation is necessary. On these occasions, a written request may be submitted to the Commissioner seeking permission for Mr. Steinbrenner to attend business meetings or otherwise communicate regarding financial or business matters affecting the Club. Unless and until such permission is granted by the Commissioner, Mr. Steinbrenner shall not attend such a meeting or otherwise become involved in such matters. It is contemplated that such requests will be made infrequently and that they will not involve (a) day-to-day operations of the Yankees, (b) the routine transmittal of information to or from financial institutions, members of the New York Yankees Partnership or other persons involved in the operation of the Club, (c) matters that can be performed adequately by other persons or (d) matters customarily handled by limited partners.
With respect to any request pursuant to the preceding paragraph, if the matter involved falls within any of the four categories enumerated below, then the Commissioner shall approve such request:
i. negotiations or disputes concerning television or radio contracts;
ii. negotiations or disputes concerning concession agreements;
iii. governmental negotiations or agreements, including lease agreements; or
iv. banking relationships, including financial arrangements.
9. It is clearly understood by Mr. Steinbrenner and all Yankees officials that it is the intention of the Commissioner to monitor closely their behavior to insure full compliance with this Agreement. Any noncompliance with this Agreement by Mr. Steinbrenner shall be deemed conduct not in the best interests of Baseball and shall subject Mr. Steinbrenner to further discipline, up to and including permanent placement on the Ineligible List. Accordingly, copies of this Agreement will be directed to all present partners of the New York Yankees Partnership and appropriate officials of the New York Yankees organization.
10. The Commissioner and Mr. Steinbrenner may make any public statement so long as any such public statement is consistent with the attached Decision in this matter and the terms of this Agreement and Resolution.
This Agreement represents the entire understanding between the parties hereto with respect to the subject matter of this Agreement and supercedes all previous representations, understandings or agreements, oral or written, between the parties. This Agreement may not be amended except in a writing signed by both parties.
Agreed to and resolved this 30th day of July 1990. (Signed) George M. Steinbrenner III Witnessed by: (Signed) Stephen E. Kaufman (Signed) Francis T. Vincent, Jr. Commissioner of Baseball Witnessed by: (Signed) Stephen D. Greenberg Deputy Commissioner of Baseball
The text of the statement issued Tuesday by New York Yankees principal owner George Steinbrenner:
As I said yesterday, I have no comment on the commissioner's decision. I am, however, satisfied with the resolution of the matter.
For some years now I have been preparing to turn over the operation of the Yankees to my sons and sons-in-law. My son Hank, subject to league approval, will become general partner at this time.
Under the agreement, I may be involved in material and extraordinary financial or business affairs of the team. In addition, I will be involved in negotiations in matters concerning radio-TV agreements, concessions agreements, governmental, state-city agreements and all banking relationships. These are the areas which I feel require my attention.
As for the baseball side, after 17 years, 14 of which were winning seasons, I think it's time to turn that over to the young blood in the family. We are presently blessed with an awful lot of fine young ballplayers joining the team and it's exciting to watch them. The future appears bright and it seems an appropriate time for change. I have no desire to return as general partner. That will rest with my sons. I have other endeavors which I plan to devote most of my available time to now, which are very important to me.
EDUCATION: Bachelor's degree from Williams College; one year of postgraduate work at Ohio State University.
PROFESSIONAL: Chairman of the board of American Ship Building Co. Owner of the thoroughbred Kinsman Stud Farm in Ocala, Fla. Headed group that bought Yankees on Jan. 3, 1973, from CBS Inc. for $10 million. He now owns 55 percent of the franchise, which could be worth $200 million.
PERSONAL: Married Elizabeth Joan Zieg in 1956. They have four children and live in Tampa.
QUOTE: Upon buying the Yankees: "We plan absentee ownership as far as running the Yankees is concerned . . . I'll stick to building ships."
EDUCATION: Studied broadcast journalism at New York University.
PROFESSIONAL: Currently unemployed, Spira is a self-described gambler. He calls himself a lifelong Yankees fan, and one of his first jobs was covering Yankees home games for a New York radio station. He also worked briefly as a publicist for the David M. Winfield Foundation.
PERSONAL: Unmarried and reportedly living in an apartment in the Bronx with his parents.
QUOTE: "Steinbrenner is a sick liar. This man promised me the world and kept me isolated in this house with his promises. He is trying to frame me and put me in jail. This man is so two-faced and sees out of his head two sides at once."
EDUCATION: Graduated cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Williams College in 1960 and from Yale law school in 1963.
PROFESSIONAL: An attorney in New York and Washington before joining the Securities and Exchange Commission in 1977. President and CEO of Columbia Pictures from 1978 to 1987. Was deputy baseball commissioner before becoming commissioner after the death of Bart Giamatti in August 1989.
PERSONAL: Married Valerie McMahon in 1965. They have one daughter and two sons.
QUOTE: "We really don't know what makes up this special relationship between baseball and the American soul. We just know that it is so. So let's leave it alone."