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Michael D. Port (born July 24, 1945) is an American former professional baseball executive. He was vice president, Umpiring for Major League Baseball from August 2005 through March 2011, when he left that position, and previously was a front-office executive for three MLB clubs. Port was the general manager of the California Angels from September 1984 through 1991 and acting GM of the Boston Red Sox from February through November of 2002.
After attending United States International University in his native Southern California, Port entered baseball in 1969 as a minor league second baseman for the newly minted San Diego Padres, but after an injury, he retired to become an executive in the San Diego organization. In 1973 he became the club's farm system director and moved to the Angels in a similar capacity in 1978.
Port was also adept at the business side of baseball, and in 1980, he was promoted by the Angels to vice president and chief administrative officer. He succeeded Buzzie Bavasi, his boss in both San Diego and Anaheim, as the Angels' general manager late in 1984. After just falling short of winning the American League West Division title in 1985, the 1986 Angels finished first in their division and led three games to one in the 1986 ALCS; they were one out from their first AL title before the Red Sox started a comeback that ended their pennant hopes. After that disappointment, the Angels, with several veteran players nearing the end of their careers, contended only in 1989. During the 1991 campaign—in which the Angels finished seventh and last in their division, despite a record of 81-81 (.500)—Port was dismissed. Nonetheless, during his tenure with the Angels, the Major League club averaged 85 wins per year and, with the assistance of scouting director Bob Fontaine and player development director Bill Bavasi, the Angels signed and developed players such as Tim Salmon, Jim Abbott, Garret Anderson, Troy Percival, Damion Easley, Gary DiSarcina and Jim Edmonds.
In 1992, he moved on to serve as the first president of the Arizona Fall League, an annual training ground inaugurated by MLB designed for the elite prospects of all member clubs, then joined the Red Sox as assistant general manager in February 1993. Three years later, he was promoted to the club's post of vice president, baseball operations. In February 2002, immediately after John W. Henry, Tom Werner and New England Sports Ventures took control of the Red Sox, Port was named acting GM. Despite 93 regular-season wins, and Port's midseason acquisition of outfielder Cliff Floyd, Boston finished second in the AL East and missed the Wild Card.
With the appointment of Theo Epstein as Boston's general manager in November 2002, Port resumed his former role. He survived a heart attack, and continued to serve as the Red Sox' VP, baseball operations through the club's 2004 World Championship. He was named MLB's vice president of umpiring, during the 2005 season. He serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Sports Officials.
- Elliott, Helene (1991-05-01). "Angels Fire Port; Duties Taken Over by O'Brien – Management: Club President Brown says there were problems of communication and style". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- "Sports People; Bavasi Is Retiring". The New York Times. 1984-09-01. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- "1985 American League Team Statistics and Standings". Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- "Revisit the '86 ALCS". ESPN. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- "Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Team History & Encyclopedia". Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- "1991 American League Team Statistics and Standings". Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- "Newswire". Los Angeles Times. 1992-02-12. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- "Red Sox Hire Mike Port as Assistant to Gorman". Los Angeles Times. 1993-02-11. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- Chass, Murray (2002-03-01). "Baseball; New Owners of Red Sox Quickly Fire Duquette". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- Browne, Ian (2002-12-06). "Mike Port to stay with Red Sox". Major League Baseball. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- "Red Sox VP Port suffers heart attack". NBC Sports. 2004-05-04. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- "Mike Port leaves Red Sox to accept position with Major League Baseball" (Press release). Boston Red Sox. 2005-08-01. Retrieved 2010-05-28.
- Baseball America Executive Database.
- Boston Red Sox media guide, 2002–2005 editions.
|California Angels General Manager
Dan O'Brien, Sr.