» 22 December 2013 » In mlb »

So, Jeff Passan wrote this:

First are the revenues. Back in 2006, a year before the recession started, baseball’s revenues were around $5.5 billion. Today, they are nearly $8.5 billion. And only now is free-agent spending catching up; over the previous three offseasons, it fell somewhere in the $1.3 billion to $1.4 billion range.


More than that are the mechanisms in place that more or less force teams to spend their money on free agents. Simply put: They can’t spend it anywhere else. [emphasis added]

Huh? Sure they can. Pay scouts more, pay baseball operations people more, pay minor league players and coaches more, refund some of the government subsidies used to pay for stadiums, fund more NCAA baseball scholarships… there are lots of ways to invest in baseball as an industry that will be more beneficial over the long term than simply shoving even more money into the pockets of free agents. Some of this revenue should find it’s way to everyone who contributes.

Why does MLB have record revenues anyway? I would argue that it’s more to with improvements to marketing, analytics and team operational models than anything the players are doing differently.

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  1. Patrick
    Jim Allen
    22/12/2013 at 1:47 am Permalink

    Absolutely right.
    Nothing could possibly be worse news for owners of a game they claim is run for the public good than reports of record revenues.

    “When the Supreme Court says baseball isn’t run like a business, everybody jumps up and down with joy. When I say the same thing, everybody throws pointy objects at me.”
    –Bill Veek

  2. Patrick
    Michael Westbay
    22/12/2013 at 8:01 am Permalink

    Jeff Passan is a “reporter” who won’t let petty things like facts stand in the way of writing the article he’s shilled to do. I won’t promote his link bait.

  3. Patrick
    22/12/2013 at 9:52 am Permalink

    Yeah I’m not nuts about Passan either, but the truth is I had started a post about this topic on a train ride a couple months ago, and never found the time/motivation to finish it. This Passan comment gave me something to respond to.

  4. Patrick
    25/12/2013 at 4:12 am Permalink

    The reason for the huge influx of revenue $$’s is that the local TV rights have mushroomed. The Dodgers signed a new contract for local TV rights in LA for $240 million/year. And that revenue isn’t shared (unless the Dodgers go over the salary cap). The increase in local TV rights is astonishing and although the NPB owners folded like a cheap suit, I can pretty much guarantee you that at least 9 MLB teams had enough revenue to pay a $50m posting fee for Tanaka (Dodgers, Yankees, Mets, Angels, Giants, Phillies, Red Sox, Cardinals, Cubs).

    Probably the best thing that MLB could do with the extra TV $’s is to maintain ticket prices and perhaps make concessions cheaper!

  5. Patrick
    25/12/2013 at 2:35 pm Permalink

    There’s new national tv revenue as well, that is shared among all the teams.

    The remaining teams — whether small-market or big-market — appear to have already made at least some plans for the additional $25 million they’ll receive this season.

    If 10% of that went to non-player personnel it would improve a lot of livelihoods.