Baseball commissioner Bud Selig will be offered an extension to his current contract, a highly placed source said, and baseball executives presume Selig will continue in the job.
Selig, 77, has one more year remaining on his current contract. He has previously said he intends to retire in 2012.
The extension offer will be for at least two years, the source said. It comes at a time when baseball is thriving and has a new labor agreement in place.
It's expected that at some point during the upcoming owners' meetings, which start Wednesday in Scottsdale, Ariz., Selig will be asked to depart the room, and then, as a matter of formality, a motion will be made to extend Selig's contract -- a motion that will be widely supported, according to sources.
Selig's compensation, which includes the use of a private jet, is in excess of $22 million annually, according to a source.
Before Game 7 of the World Series in October, Selig said he planned to leave this year but admitted few thought he would. Sitting in the front row of the news conference room, Sue Selig nodded her head.
"Starting with my wife, I'm happy or sad to say, but she's somewhat skeptical," he said.
It's not the first time that Selig has talked about leaving the office.
When his current three-year contract extension was approved in 2009, Selig, who had previously said he would retire that year, announced there would be no more extensions.
"This is clearly it," he said at the time. "I could say this without equivocation."
Selig began serving as MLB's acting commissioner in 1992, when the owners forced out Fay Vincent. He had repeatedly said he didn't want the job on a full-time basis, but accepted a five-year term in 1998 and gave up running the Milwaukee Brewers, the franchise he purchased in 1970. His family sold its interest in the Brewers in 2005.
The owners voted to extend Selig's contact in 2001 through 2006, and again in 2004 through 2009.
He is the second-longest serving commissioner behind Kenesaw Mountain Landis, who presided over the game from 1920 through 1944.
During the meetings, the owners also intend to approve the completion of the sale of the San Diego Padres from John Moores to Jeff Moorad.
Buster Olney is a senior baseball writer for ESPN The Magazine. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.