"I'm very excited for Jimmie Lee," Alderson said in a telephone interview on Wednesday. "He's been with the league for a long time and will do an outstanding job."
Alderson, despite his role as chief executive of the Padres, is leading MLB's involvement in the Olympic baseball movement, and on Wednesday was on his way to Switzerland for an International Baseball Federation (IBAF) meeting.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has been threatening for several years to drop baseball as a gold medal sport. Though baseball will be part of the gold medal program during the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, the IOC has scheduled a July 6 vote to determine the sport's future beyond then.
Alderson said he is committed to handling MLB details in that regard, at least through the July IOC vote.
Solomon joins Jonathan Mariner as the top ranking African-American official in the Commissioner's office. Mariner is also an executive vice president and MLB's chief financial officer.
In his previous role, Solomon was involved in the Major Leagues, the Minor Leagues, the International Baseball Operations, the Major League Scouting Bureau and the Arizona Fall League.
One of his pet projects was the launching of the first MLB Youth Academy at Compton College in Compton, Calif., which was announced two years ago and is under construction.
As executive vice president, he'll take over Alderson's duties supervising on-field discipline, security, and facility management, and he will report to Bob DuPuy, MLB's president and chief operating officer.
Solomon has a law degree from Harvard and a bachelor's degree from Dartmouth. He joined MLB in 1991 as director of Minor League operations and was later promoted to executive director of Minor League operations before moving on to the now-vacant position of senior vice president of baseball operations.
Solomon wasn't available to comment because he is on vacation. He said in a press release issued by MLB that he's grateful to Selig and DuPuy.
"I believe that my experience in the Commissioner's office, particularly the opportunity to work so closely with Sandy Alderson, has seasoned me for this very important post," he said in the release. "This is a real challenge and I am looking forward to it with great enthusiasm."