View Full Version : Franchise parity
At Jim's suggestion, I would like to explore your thoughts about the current state of haves and have nots in Baseball. It appears if a club's payroll is not at least $60 MM they have no post season hopes.
Should anything be done? What? Orangemom, I know you have thoughts on this.
Let's explore this topic. I know that you here can discuss this without getting angry about other's viewpoints and we all can learn from other's perspectives.
05-11-00, 04:31 PM
ya know nomes,
i've usally come out in suppport of parity, but i think i'm changing my tune... hey, a leopard can change his spots... i just thought it was the noble thing to do ya know to give everyone an equal stake at success... but ya know what, since they put that damn parity imposing salary cap in the nfl my giants have stunk and i don't like it one bit...
i mean yeah i'm being a selfish juvenile fan, but i'm also being serious too... look, look at the rams... they win, they gotta salary cap, they can't resign their players that helped them win w/out exceeding this damn cap... the team splits up, no more rams... look at the 49ers... look at the oilers who came close and they still got busted up because they couldn't resign valuable players... parity shmarity, i say if ya can't handle the heat, get out the kitchen... i'm sorry nomes, i really want to see baseball succeed in places like kansas city, montreal, cincinatti etc cause of history and all, (and right now those teams are in fact doing well), but not if it means hancuffing my yank$ we got the dough to spend what we want to spend... just cause we spend alot doesn't mean we have the greatest players anyways... we don't have no mac, sosa, griffey, unit, pedro, belle, thomas, arod, pudge, chipper, belle, walker etc... we just VALUE our guys more than anyone else would... i mean just cause we'd pay coney $12-13mil doesn't mean we got the best pitcher in the majors and no one else could compete for his services...
the bottom line is i'm more inclined to say let the market take care of itself on this one... baseball can be very profitable... if you're in it, and you can't sustain the talent on the field that you think you need to succeed, step aside, there's tons of new internet millionaires and billionaires every day able to take your place and turn a buck while putting a competitive product on the field... if it wasn't possible, NO ONE in their right mind would buy my expos or the royals....
these owners their so full of it always crying broke... look at the stros owner, he bellyached for years about how much dough he was losing and how he needed a new PUBLICLY funded stadium full of FAT JUICY luxury boxes,(not for the the avg joe "public" mind you)... so he gets his billionaire play pen w/ all the works and what does he do, strips the team salary by like 20mil, giving away their best pitcher, best centerfielder, best catching prospect, and this year the good money says bagwell is next on the express outta houston, (unfortunately rumors have him headed back home to baaaston).
anyways, sorry i gotta "little" longwinded ;) but I really feel strongly that the league will survive w/out too much meddling in the name of parity... the yanks have always had dough... but we cannot win on dough alone... ask angeloser or fred tampon, uh wilpon...
05-11-00, 05:40 PM
You can have all the money in the world but unless you hire the right scouts, gm and manager...and yes, have the right owner, a team can go right down the drain. This great game of baseball has become a business...and as is true in any successful business it has to be run properly from the top on down. Money is not the answer...knowledge and skill along with a solid work ethic and a deep, basic love of the game...changes losers into winners.
05-11-00, 06:20 PM
I'll weigh in on this one.
I think there needs to be LIMITED revenue sharing in baseball. The NFL model, with full sharing of all TV revenues is far too extreme for me, as is the salary cap concept employed by both the NFL and the NBA.
I'd suggest a system something like this:
First - Revenues
- Broadcast revenues: All national broadcast & cable revenues should be split evenly among the teams. All local broadcast & cable revenues should be split to a lesser degree. The local team should keep 50% of all such revenues, and the balance should be placed into a pool that is split evenly among all teams. This encourages the individual teams to make the best deal they can, and still allows for some sharing. In the (many) cases where the broadcast outlet is owned or controlled by the team, an independent party would determine the fair market value of the contract (as if it had been an arm's length deal).
- Merchandising revenues: The revenues for caps, shirts, etc. should be shared on a similar basis to the local broadcast revenues (perhaps with a different cut-off point).
- Ticket revenues: The home and visiting teams would share the ticket revenues on a 50/50 basis (or on a basis slightly weighted toward the home team).
- Parking / concessions: These belong 100% to the home team (and its subcontractors).
Each team would therefore have its holdback of the various revenue streams and an equal share of the pooled resources.
Second - Player Salaries
- Maximum Salaries: There would be a soft cap on player salaries. Spending above the soft cap would be subject to a 30% (or so) excise tax to the shared pool. Again, ALL teams (not just the poor ones) would share this pool.
- Minimum Salaries: There would ALSO be a floor on aggregate player salaries. This would be a soft floor. A team that failed to spend up to the floor would forfeit 75% of the difference between it's share of the pool and it's aggregate salary.
- Incentives: In all cases, player incentives would count toward the salaries cap & floor.
- Formula: Both the floor and the cap would be determined based on a formula of the total shared revenues. The floor would be set to guarantee that the low revenue teams did not take their cut from the shared income and just pocket it. The formula would be complicated, as it would account for the fact that even the poorest team would have made a significant contribution to the pool (but a much larger withdrawal from it). I would estimate that under current conditions, the floor would be in the $30MM range, and the cap in the $75MM range.
Under this scenario, the successful teams would still have the ability to enjoy the fruits of their labor, and the unsuccessful teams would at least have a chance to pull out of their situations.
It is obvious that a high payroll is NOT sufficient for success (ask the Orioles, Dodgers, and Angels), but it does seem to be necessary (the Twins, Expos, and Royals all have fairly well run organizations, but little chance to compete.
I think this proposal creates a balanced structure that gives the small teams a chance, but does not create total parity or "socialism".
Good thoughts all. Let me make a few points. Baseball had, before the 1950's been owned primarily by sportsman with money and not businessmen. That said the lack of money still destroyed some franchises. The Red Sox from 1903-1919 were a great winning franchise, then their owner, Harry Frazee had to sell many of his stars , including the Babe to raise money.
The Athletics in the 20's were a powerhouse until Connie Mack had to sell off his stars to raise cash to keep the franchise going. So today's problem is not new, it is just structured differently.
TV first came on the scene in 1947 and the season's ML rights were purchased for $75,000. At that time there were no clothing and other paraphenalia sales to speak of so all the revenue primarily came from those attending the games.
Today TV and memorabilia far outdistance any other source of income. Large markets such as NY and LA far outstrip other towns in their ability to provide a large population base for advertisors to pay for those TV rights. Large markets have a fantastic advantage. This would appear to indicate that income from TV and clothing might be handled by the ML office and pooled and shared in some fashion.
Also I do not like the idea of 30 ML teams in three unbalannced divisions in each of two leagues. There are too many week markets including Miami, Tampa, Toronto, Montreal, Seattle, Minnesota, Texas, Houston, KC,
Pittsburg to name some.
I would prefer to see us look at three possibilities.
1. Go back to the eight team league with two leagues.
2. Go to a three league with six teams per league system
3. Go to a three league eight team system.
The makeup of the leagues would depend on an economic study of a city to support ML ball.
Anyway those are some of my thoughts. All I know is that I think thirty teams are too much and I do not like the unbalanced three divisions in each league.
05-12-00, 08:38 PM
Nome, ansk and clipper...my post seems so naive and simplistic compared to your knowledge and intellect...I reacted to the way baseball was...and not to what it has become...you have given me great insight into baseball in the year 2000. Still, it is a sad testimony that money has become such a deciding factor as to who who is a competitor and who is not.
Please don't feel that way. Although our posts were long and analytical to the point of absurd, I also agree totally with your shorter right on post.
[Edited by Nome on May 13th, 2000 at 08:23 AM]
05-19-00, 10:25 PM
I don't see how many teams can be eliminated, realistically. Do you want to penalize a team like the Twins, who have won 2 World Series in the last 20 years, for the current state of baseball. I think some type of revenue sharing is the answer. Not throwing it all in one big pot and giving everyone the same $, but taking a little from the top (and yes, that means the Yankees too, it will hurt, but think about it, it hurts all the teams with good attendance/TV contracts too) and giving it to the bottom feeders. The more teams that have a chance to compete, the more exciting the entire game becomes. As Meggie pointed out, money does not necessarily equal winning (do the LA Dodgers or last year's Orioles sound familiar?) - all that "sharing the wealth" a little does is give the teams with good managers, coaches, farm systems, scouting and trading acumen a realistic chance to be more than a glorified Triple A team. If fans in any city see that their team is doing well and has a chance to hold on to some of their players (because no one wants to play for a perennial loser), they will come back to the ballpark. As we are all die-hard Yanks fans, we (those of us who are over 20, say) remember the empty seats at the Stadium in the bad days of the late 80's-early 90's. Probably a better example, because they never had the consistent tradition that the Yankees have had, is the Braves. I remember in the 80's, they were terrible and drew terrible crowds. Now, they may have quiet crowds, but people do come to the Ted - why - because they are winning!
I just got done reading "Fair Ball" by Bob Costas, he has excellent ideas on sharing revenue as well as a salary structure that would raise the salary of the players in their early years, while capping the top salaries, and allowing for a "superstar cap".
OK, this went on and on, but you get the idea...:)
Originally posted by meggieNY
This great game of baseball has become a business...and as is true in any successful business it has to be run properly from the top on down. Money is not the answer...knowledge and skill along with a solid work ethic and a deep, basic love of the game...changes losers into winners.
Well I beg to differ. To a lot of players money is all that matters. I am not saying all players think this way, but a great deal of them do. Baseball has never became a business it was always a business from day one. The game of baseball changes players yes I agree, but as to say baseball has become a business and that money is not the answer, it does to some but not all...
[Edited by Butnud on May 19th, 2000 at 11:44 PM]
05-19-00, 11:43 PM
I'm with Nome here. There are too many teams. There should be 24 teams total. Use internet money to even the field as much as it can - and in the future this may be great. Let other teams whither and die on the vine. Give them minor league teams.
But on another note, I agree with Nome for their being to many teams. Frankly I was shocked when I heard their was gonna be the two expansion teams. The D-backs and Devil Rays. There are too many teams and when playoffs come it is too complicated. Baseball is a very simple sport, why make it complicated so nobody likes it?
05-20-00, 03:57 PM
As for baseball being a business from day one, that's not completely true. If you were to ask Mickey Mantle how much he cared about what money he made as to just playing the game, the answer is self-evident. He didn't even know what an agent was.
"When I played the game the players were stupid. Now, the owners are."
I agree with ansky, a salary cap is not the answer. Take a look at the "bought" teams as of late. Money doesn't guarantee a championship. The Florida Marlins being the exception, where did it get Baltimore? Baseball, being a part of life, should be treated that way, and life isn't fair. Some have money some don't, we as yankee fans are fortunate enough to be on the better half :)george dishes it out when he needs to, but that is not the reason why the yankees have won their championships.
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