Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Berri: Why Masahiro Tanaka’s Yankees Contract Is Good for Baseball

As Professor Lavoof said: “There has to be a world off the books”.

So baseball people have thought large salaries are a threat for more than 130 years.  Despite this sentiment, Major League Baseball – unlike the NBA, NFL, and NHL – does not have a salary cap.  Consequently, baseball – relative to these other sports – has substantially more disparity in payroll.  In sum, there does appear to be a difference in baseball between the “haves” and “have-nots.”

At least, that is the payroll story.  Payroll disparity, though, isn’t really the issue from the perspective of the fans.  What really matters is disparity on the field. And on that count, baseball – relative to other sports – doesn’t really have a problem.

...In sum, losing talent to another league tends to worsen competitive balance.  And likewise, expanding your talent base makes it better.

Of course, all of this might still leave you thinking that the Yankees buying a winner is bad for baseball.  Perhaps the following might make you feel better:  Variation in payroll in baseball explains less than 20 percent of the variation in winning percentage. One reason why spending doesn’t match outcomes is that forecasting the future in baseball is difficult. We can look at the stats and know who was “good” or “bad” in the past, but the future – especially for pitchers – is hard to predict.  Consequently, it is hard for the richest teams to simply spend money and win.

So if you don’t like the Yankees (and I share this sentiment), do not despair.  The Yankees cannot simply buy a title.  But if the money in Major League Baseball can get more great players to come to the North America, then that is good for the game. At least, the game in North America.

Repoz Posted: February 04, 2014 at 08:01 PM | 9 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: business, yankees

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. ptodd Posted: February 04, 2014 at 08:37 PM (#4651786)
When you consider that only 1 team in baseball over the last 19 years has won a World Series in the bottom half of the league in payroll.

In the last 18 years, the Red Sox and Yankees have had the top 2 payrolls in baseball, and won 8 World Series between them.

So its no guarantee, but the larger the payroll the larger your odds of winning a World Series are.

Sure, the bottom half in payroll can make the playoffs from time to time in a system where 1/3 of the teams make the playoffs, just from random variance. But low payroll teams being consistently good are relatively rare since once you stop getting top 10 draft picks your source of cost controlled talent dries up.
   2. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: February 04, 2014 at 08:45 PM (#4651793)
The writer probably didn't write the headline but the headline is misleading. The article is about why Tanaka coming to MLB is good for MLB. Why we need someone to illuminate this startling fact for us, I don't know.

I hate the Yankees like any warmblooded American should, but I remain skeptical as ever that having the teams with the most fans be the most frequently successful is a bad thing.
   3. This is going to be state of the art wall Posted: February 04, 2014 at 09:22 PM (#4651811)
Variation in payroll in baseball explains less than 20 percent of the variation in winning percentage. One reason why spending doesn’t match outcomes is that forecasting the future in baseball is difficult.


Hey, somebody ran a regression. Of course, using strictly payroll of MLB players is misleading, at least prior to the rules changes. The White Sox were a "large market team" in name only, spending relative trifling amounts on latin academies and scouting and signing bonuses.
   4. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 04, 2014 at 09:36 PM (#4651814)
I hate the Yankees like any warmblooded American should, but I remain skeptical as ever that having the teams with the most fans be the most frequently successful is a bad thing.

Important point. MLB is a profit maximizing enterprise, for owners, players, execs, etc.

Any system that has KC winning as much as the Yankees is grossly inefficient. Big market teams derive more revenue from winning, therefore the whole MLB ecosystem benefits from them winning more often.
   5. Monty Posted: February 04, 2014 at 10:18 PM (#4651834)
I hate the Yankees like any warmblooded American should, but I remain skeptical as ever that having the teams with the most fans be the most frequently successful is a bad thing.


I think that might mix cause and effect. If the Mets started being as successful as the Yankees and the Yankees started being as unsuccessful as the Mets, after a few years, their fan bases would reflect that.
   6. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: February 04, 2014 at 10:40 PM (#4651841)
Yes, but the Brewers will never have as many fans as either because of the simple reality of population distribution.
   7. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq., LLC Posted: February 05, 2014 at 12:54 AM (#4651859)
I hate the Yankees like any warmblooded American should, but I remain skeptical as ever that having the teams with the most fans be the most frequently successful is a bad thing.


Yankees consistently good: good for baseball
Yankees consistently winning pennants: bad for baseball
   8. Random Transaction Generator Posted: February 05, 2014 at 08:16 AM (#4651895)
Yes, but the Brewers will never have as many fans as either because of the simple reality of population distribution.


Is that true? I know that the Green Bay Packers have a large fan base outside of Wisconsin. Couldn't a successful/entertaining team in a smaller market gain a following outside that market?

   9. McCoy Posted: February 05, 2014 at 08:26 AM (#4651901)
Ask the millions of rays and A's fans all across this country of ours

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Traderdave
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT - 2018 NBA Summer Potpourri (finals, draft, free agency, Colangelo dragging)
(1111 - 6:07pm, Jun 17)
Last: Oriole Tragic: doomed to mysterious ignomy

NewsblogOTP 2018 June 11: Sports, politics conflicted 50 years ago with mourning of RFK's death
(1228 - 6:04pm, Jun 17)
Last: Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant

NewsblogGrumpy Gossage Napalms His Bridges:BWitz:NYT (reg req.)
(6 - 6:02pm, Jun 17)
Last: Captain Supporter

NewsblogDodgers' surprise ace makes All-Star case in win over Giants
(35 - 6:00pm, Jun 17)
Last: PreservedFish

NewsblogOT: Soccer Thread (World Cup)
(410 - 5:32pm, Jun 17)
Last: Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine

NewsblogOMNICHATTER for the weekend of June 16-17, 2018
(157 - 5:31pm, Jun 17)
Last: Jess Franco

NewsblogFormer MLB pitcher Kevin Brown reportedly held two mail thieves at gunpoint until police arrived
(142 - 4:24pm, Jun 17)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogOT - Catch-All Pop Culture Extravaganza (April - June 2018)
(3667 - 1:34pm, Jun 17)
Last: Baldrick

NewsblogEvery MLB Logo Ranked, with Bonus Criticism by a Designer
(80 - 1:25pm, Jun 17)
Last: Jess Franco

NewsblogRoyals outfielder Jorge Soler has fractured bone in left foot, will undergo CT scan
(4 - 11:39am, Jun 17)
Last: Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network)

NewsblogDrink your Orioles pain away: This Baltimore bar is offering free shots every time Chris Davis gets a hit
(29 - 10:31am, Jun 17)
Last: SOLockwood

NewsblogAngels Place Garrett Richards, Nick Tropeano, Zack Cozart, Jim Johnson On 10-Day DL
(2 - 7:30pm, Jun 16)
Last: McCoy

NewsblogDeadspin: What Do We Think Of This Old Video Of An Umpire Handling An Extremely Pissed Terry Collins?
(27 - 4:23pm, Jun 16)
Last: Hecubot

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 6-13-2018
(25 - 1:38pm, Jun 16)
Last: Tom Nawrocki

Gonfalon CubsClicking
(40 - 1:37pm, Jun 16)
Last: Moses Taylor, aka Hambone Fakenameington

Page rendered in 0.2698 seconds
46 querie(s) executed