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Giants prepare for leadership shift under Baer

SHARE Giants prepare for leadership shift under Baer

SAN FRANCISCO — Newly promoted Giants CEO Larry Baer might be open to making a run at a premier free agent this winter, though his philosophy still focuses on building a franchise from the bottom up to develop a deep and talented farm system.

So, might a slugger like Albert Pujols or Prince Fielder be splashing home runs into McCovey Cove come 2012? That remains to be seen.

In a surprising move by the reigning World Series champions, Baer is taking on a bigger role and Bill Neukom is stepping aside as managing general partner at the end of the calendar year. The announcement comes 10½ months after the Giants captured the franchise's first World Series title since moving West in 1958.

Neither Baer nor Neukom would clearly answer Thursday whether Neukom had been pushed out of his decision-making duties.