The Detroit Tigers today announced that Assistant General Manager Al Avila has been promoted to the role of executive vice president of baseball operations and general manager. Avila will assume all responsibilities related to baseball operations of the club and he will report directly to Tigers Owner Mike Ilitch. Executive Vice President of Business Operations, Duane McLean, will continue to oversee all aspects of the team's business operations and will also report directly to the team owner.

"I would like to thank Dave Dombrowski for his 14 years of service," said Ilitch. "Together we've enjoyed some success, but we're still in aggressive pursuit of our ultimate goal: to bring a World Series title to Detroit and Michigan. I've decided to release Dave from his contract in order to afford him the time to pursue other career opportunities. I feel this is the right time for the Tigers to move forward under new leadership."

"I'm very excited for this opportunity, and honored and grateful to Mr. Ilitch for having the faith and trust in me to run the ballclub in our continuing pursuit of a World Series championship," said Avila. "After 24 years in professional baseball and 14 with the Detroit Tigers, I believe I'm uniquely qualified to be successful in this role in leading this organization. We're confident we can make a strong push to win this year, and that we have the foundation in place to win next year and for years to come."

Avila, 57, brings a wealth of baseball experience to the Tigers' general manager position, including the last 24 years at the Major League level. In June 1992, he joined the Florida Marlins as the assistant director of Latin American operations after a four-year stint as the director of athletics and head coach of the baseball team at St. Thomas (FL) University.