George Steinbrenner’s daughter filed for divorce this week against husband Steve Swindal. The filing appears to end his chances to take over as the head of the New York Yankees.
“I’m the Boss. I continue to be the Boss,” Steinbrenner said Wednesday in a statement issued by spokesman Howard Rubenstein. “I have no intention of retiring, and my family runs the Yankees with me.”
Steinbrenner said in June, 2005 that Swindal would eventually take his place as head of the Yankees. Swindal is currently a general partner with the club and chairman of Yankee Global Enterprises LLC.
Jennifer Swindal filed the papers Tuesday in Hillsborough County Circuit Court’s family law department, according to Rubenstein. The divorce papers cited “irreconcilable differences.”
“Steve and Jenny Swindal announced today that they are amicably ending their marriage of 23 years,” Rubenstein said in a statement. “Although their marriage is dissolving, they remain friends and maintain a strong mutual respect. They are devoted to their two children and will make them their shared focus.”
Swindal was arrested in St. Petersburg, Fla. by police at around 4:30 a.m. on Feb. 15 for driving under the influence. He was weaving and driving 61 mph in a 35 mph zone when he was pulled over, according to St. Petersburg Police.
Swindal later said that he was embarrassed about the arrest. The divorce likely removes Swindal from inheritor of being Yankees boss.
The divorce filing ends a month and a half of speculation concerning Swindal’s future with the Yankees following the arrest.
The possibilities to replace Swindal within the organization include Vice presidents Hal and Hank Steinbrenner, and Felix Lopez, who is married to Steinbrenner’s other daughter, Jessica. He is also a vice president with the club.
Whoever does replace Swindal will face the challenge of replicating the strong relationship that he established with general manager Brian Cashman and manager Joe Torre.
Swindal and Cashman worked together to draft Cashman’s arrangement where the GM has the powers that other GM’s do throughout the Majors. Before last season, his power was limited by Steinbrenner.
Steve Swindal became a Yankees general partner in 1998. Then in 2005, Steinbrenner announced that he would be his replacement during a news conference about the new Yankee Stadium.
Before the announcement Swindal extended the contract of Joe Torre in 2004. Torre has repeatedly praised Swindal. Torre had previous difficulties in contract negotiations in 2001 with team president Randy Levine.