The morning after the rather surprising news that Bill Neukom was out as CEO of the San Francisco Giants we found a virtual love fest between Neukom and incoming CEO Larry Baer.
Neukom met alongside Baer in a Thursday morning press conference at AT&T. It was there that he formally announced he's retiring from the Giants at the end of the calendar year.
He said he was not forced out. His answer to that direct question was, "I don't think that is right characterization at all." He said the decision started when he began thinking about a succession plan that lead to questions of himself like, "Can you? Should you?"
Neukom said he will stay on as "chairman emeritus" and maybe more importantly - a season ticket holder.
Neukom talked first and told the gathered media that the intent was to make this announcement at the end of the season. That changed when the Merc's Mark Purdy broke the story Wednesday afternoon.
Neukom said Thursday that the "good news" is that he would be succeeded by Baer.
Baer quickly said it was "an honor" to follow Neukom as CEO and said it was under his leadership that the team "got one of these" as he held up a fist showing off a World Series ring.
Baer then pledged the goal would remain the same for the organization: winning. "Going forward it will be is business as usual. To put it simply, this is not a turnaround in any stretch of the imagination. As Bill said the franchise is stronger than ever. The perspective of winning is foremost, tantamount, and always will be," Baer said.
The transition of positions will not be finalized until it is approved by Major League Baseball.