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Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Derek Jeter’s reported plan to slash Marlins’ payroll is cruel | SI.com

It’s a lot easier to say it when it’s not your money.

It would be a colossal mistake and deeply wrong on the part of Jeter and Sherman to come to Miami and immediately tear things down. To give up right from the get go would be to admit openly that professional baseball isn’t worth the effort in Miami, and if the new ownership group can’t commit to doing what’s right for the franchise and its fans, then they shouldn’t be allowed to purchase the team. Manfred and MLB may desperately want Jeter back in the fold, and they likely want to sell fans on the idea of a new day coming in Miami. But should Jeter buy the team, it looks like it’ll be the same old story for both players and fans.

Jim Furtado Posted: September 05, 2017 at 02:35 PM | 87 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: derek jeter, marlins

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   1. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 05, 2017 at 02:48 PM (#5526268)
It’s a lot easier to say it when it’s not your money.

If they couldn't afford a competitive team, WTF did they bid $1.2B? Everyone thinks they wildly overpaid. Don't overpay, and they you can maintain a real payroll.

MLB really needs to stop letting owners buy teams, leverage them up, and then slash payroll to pay off the debt.
   2. Man o' Schwar Posted: September 05, 2017 at 02:51 PM (#5526272)
There's so many better ways for Jeter to change things. I'd like to see, when the opposing pitcher gives up a home run, a bat boy run out from the Marlins' dugout and hand the pitcher a gift basket.

(Also, I agree with #1 100%. If you're buying the team, there should be some provision that you can't just sell off all the useful parts, then put the team back on the block in a few years to try to make a quick profit.)
   3. There are no words... (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: September 05, 2017 at 02:57 PM (#5526276)
MLB really needs to stop letting owners buy teams, leverage them up, and then slash payroll to pay off the debt.


No BLEEPIN' comment...

#largestmarketmyass
   4. Sunday silence Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:07 PM (#5526287)
but didnt this sort of idea of overseeing owners end after the Charles O FInley era? In about 1975 the comm'r nixed a deal where FInley tried to basically sell off his major stars. But eventually he was able to make the deal and I guess the thinking now is that the Comm'r really has no power to block this.

Or does Manfred have more indepedence?
   5. Spahn Insane, stimulus-funded BurlyMan™ Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:11 PM (#5526291)
Yeah, but season ticket holders still get gift baskets, right?
   6. RJ in TO Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:15 PM (#5526297)
Don't overpay, and they you can maintain a real payroll.
Franchises are like free agents - generally speaking, if you don't overpay, you're not getting one. The Houston Rockets are allegedly selling for $2.2 billion, which seems completely insane to me, but apparently at least one person was willing to pay it.
   7. RJ in TO Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:18 PM (#5526303)
but didnt this sort of idea of overseeing owners end after the Charles O FInley era? In about 1975 the comm'r nixed a deal where FInley tried to basically sell off his major stars. But eventually he was able to make the deal and I guess the thinking now is that the Comm'r really has no power to block this.

Or does Manfred have more indepedence?
I thought any deal involving a certain amount of cash (at a threshold of one million, the last time I checked, a long time ago) was still subject to commissioner approval. I can't remember the last time, however, that the commissioner actually stepped in to use this power to block/alter a trade.
   8. Sleepless in Munich Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:21 PM (#5526307)
As has been noted several times, it would be foolish to burn all the goodwill of a new ownership about a couple dozen million dollars on a $1.2B deal, therefore tgis reporting does not really pass the smell test. There are ways for the Marlis to organically lower the payroll over the next years while making good baseball decisions, but getting to $55m would be a fire sale of epic proportions.
   9. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:24 PM (#5526310)
but didnt this sort of idea of overseeing owners end after the Charles O FInley era? In about 1975 the comm'r nixed a deal where FInley tried to basically sell off his major stars. But eventually he was able to make the deal and I guess the thinking now is that the Comm'r really has no power to block this.

The commissioner could block an undercapitalized owner buying the team for an inflated price.

Franchises are like free agents - generally speaking, if you don't overpay, you're not getting one. The Houston Rockets are allegedly selling for $2.2 billion, which seems completely insane to me, but apparently at least one person was willing to pay it.

Right. Which is fine if you have the cash, and are willing to invest in the team.

The issue is ownership groups paying so much for the team, that they can't afford a competitive payroll, and have to slash salaries, and live off the teat of shared revenue.

The league should enforce debt limits on acquisitions, and require additional cash equal to at least one year's payroll be placed in escrow.
   10. LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:26 PM (#5526314)
If they couldn't afford a competitive team, WTF did they bid $1.2B?
Because you don't need to have a competitive team to make MLB money, you just have to have a team. And now, they do. They bought the team from Loria, the worst human in history. Frank McCourt leveraged himself to his eyeballs, and after less than a decade, he's a multi-billionaire with a new wife a quarter-century younger than him. There's no justice in the universe. There's only money.
   11. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:26 PM (#5526315)
Meh.

Sorry folks but I find it hard to get upset about teams (other than mine of course*) slashing payrolls because of cheap owners. Cheap owners are not a new thing, they are a fact of life.

I am not defending the move or endorsing it, mostly because, well, nothing has happened yet. But the article is overboard IMO.

* And then I gladly throw myself a pity party, but calling it "cruel" and such is silly.
   12. Heart of Matt Harvey Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:35 PM (#5526325)
There's no justice in the universe. There's only money.

Gift Basket
   13. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: September 05, 2017 at 03:38 PM (#5526328)
I remain quite skeptical that the enterprise of MLB, as a whole, makes a cent more revenue with 30 teams than it would with 24 teams.

That is to say, I don't know that the... let's see, let's pick six teams with rock bottom attendance year after year... Marlins, Rays, Pirates, Brewers, Athletics and Indians serve any purpose beyond padding other team's schedules, a privilege for which other teams pay those teams' owners handsomely. And I think that with each year we proceed into the Information Age, that gets more true.

Yet the people running MLB, who are far smarter--or at least far richer, which is at least a data point suggesting that they are smarter--seem eager to expand the league, which inevitably means adding two more teams that could not financially survive without the Yankees and Dodgers paying their bills.
   14. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 05, 2017 at 04:03 PM (#5526363)
There's no justice in the universe. There's only money.

Well, I'm still allowed to be pissed off, and call those people names.
   15. The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 05, 2017 at 04:21 PM (#5526387)
This article is a rehash of the previous one, which was based on a single unnamed source claiming to have been invited to join the ownership group. Maybe it will pan out that way, but I'd hold off putting much faith in it.
   16. Tim D Posted: September 05, 2017 at 04:46 PM (#5526426)
MLB does have debt to equity requirements for clubs. They aren't widely publicized but there are limits, and one of the reasons McCourt lost the Dodgers was the failure to cooperate. Ilitch was getting afoul of the Commissioner's office in Detroit with his $200M payrolls because revenues weren't covering it. The Ilitches are worth $5B or so but they have a lot of debt too. Loria didn't have a lot of debt because he was so notoriously cheap on everything. The Jeter group is probably heavily leveraged, but within limits. The notion that they will invest $1.2B, then run down the value of the franchise, at least short term, doesn't really pass the smell test. Especially for the want of say $50-60M a year in payroll (4-5% of acquisition cost). I'm speculating, but I have a strong suspicion the source of these stories has an axe to grind, so is snarking publicly at the group. Let's see what they actually do.
   17. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: September 05, 2017 at 04:55 PM (#5526430)
Well, I'm still allowed to be pissed off, and call those people names.

...and then vote for them, over and over again.

I kid. Come on, I had to, you put it right on the tee.
   18. Blanks for Nothing, Larvell Posted: September 05, 2017 at 04:59 PM (#5526438)
There's no actual indication that Miami is an MLB-quality market and plenty of indication it isn't.

One can't help but wonder if the purchase price was inflated by a wink/wink from MLB that moving the franchise wouldn't necessarily be frowned upon, if things continue as is.

   19. LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim Posted: September 05, 2017 at 05:02 PM (#5526445)
The Jeter group is probably heavily leveraged, but within limits. The notion that they will invest $1.2B, then run down the value of the franchise, at least short term, doesn't really pass the smell test. Especially for the want of say $50-60M a year in payroll (4-5% of acquisition cost). I'm speculating, but I have a strong suspicion the source of these stories has an axe to grind, so is snarking publicly at the group.
Given the very recent history of major sports franchise buyers in general and the the Miami franchise in particular screwing the denizens of their home county out a heck-ton of money, I'd say there's some reason to be suspicious.
   20. Tim D Posted: September 05, 2017 at 05:10 PM (#5526454)
Jeter's group has zero to do with history of the Miami franchise. Very few owners drastically cut payroll when they come in so I doubt there is a trend in "recent history."
   21. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 05, 2017 at 05:14 PM (#5526458)
Very few owners drastically cut payroll when they come in so I doubt there is a trend in "recent history."

Astros and Cubs both did.
   22. Blanks for Nothing, Larvell Posted: September 05, 2017 at 05:22 PM (#5526479)
The talking points write themselves:

--The last two winners here were unsustainable
--Our goal isn't to just build something we're going to have to tear down right away, we want to contend every year
--We're aren't going to overspend so the winner we're going to build will be different
--So we're going to cut payroll so we can build something sustainable
--Bear with us

Etc.
   23. Tim D Posted: September 05, 2017 at 05:50 PM (#5526519)
"Astros and Cubs both did."

Both with no other meaningful choices. Both turned out pretty well. And two in ten years does not constitute a trend.
   24. RMc's Unenviable Situation Posted: September 05, 2017 at 05:58 PM (#5526523)
I don't know that the... let's see, let's pick six teams with rock bottom attendance year after year... Marlins, Rays, Pirates, Brewers, Athletics and Indians serve any purpose beyond padding other team's schedules

Wait, didn't one of these teams almost win the flippin' World Series last year...?!
   25. Walt Davis Posted: September 05, 2017 at 06:18 PM (#5526537)
How many franchises have been purchased in the last 10 years? We can add the Dodgers to the list, so it's 2 out of 3. Anybody else? (If it is 2 out of 3, that's as close to a trend as you can realistically hope for out of a group of 3. If you want to argue that franchises change hands so infrequently that it's silly to talk about "trends" then that's fine.)

#18: There's no place for them to move. Further Loria got a new stadium just a few years ago and no doubt whatever sweetheart deal he got has a decade to run (and probably legal hurdles to get out of) so nobody will take their threat to move seriously either.

By the way, in the other thread I talked about the near impossibility for them to get down to $55 M. Well, I've apparently under-rated Gordon. The bat is back to being not very useful but apparently he's adding so much on the bases and defense that he's still average or better. That's a guy who can be traded at (or very near) to 3/$40. So they probably can get down to $55 without dumping every arb-eligible player, they could probably keep 2 out of Realmuto, Bour and Ozuna if they really put their mind to it.
   26. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: September 05, 2017 at 06:51 PM (#5526552)

Wait, didn't one of these teams almost win the flippin' World Series last year...?!


They sure did. And that rocketed them all the way up to 24th out of 30 in attendance this year.

Cleveland (and, painful as it is for me personally to admit, Pittsburgh) has a century and a half of baseball history, but a lot has changed in 150 years, and it can't profitably support a major league baseball team anymore.
   27. No longer interested in this website Posted: September 05, 2017 at 07:06 PM (#5526562)
The curious thing about the modern baseball fan is that they (1) complain about high salaries and insist their team has to dump payroll when they're out of the pennant race AND (2) whine when their owners are cheap.

All MLB owners are filthy rich. Filthy stinking rich. That includes the bozo in Kansas City and the fellas up in Oakland. Every one of them has oodles of money. They also have a tremendous asset, one that has customer loyalty beyond belief. I mean, I think most MLB teams could perform a ritual sacrifice on the infield before the first home stand of the year, change the nickname and colors of their team every month, and construct a fire maze lined with cannibals outside their turn styles and fans would still climb over themselves to get to games or watch them on TV. People love their teams, even if the owner is a Trump-sized jackwagon. Which many have been. (Calvin Griffith or Marge Schott anyone?)

I am never shocked at the purchase price of a MLB team. I mean, where else are you going to get a team? In the county over yonder?

The vetting process to join the MLB Ownership Group most likely consists of only a few questions:

1. Are you a man, preferably white?
2. Do you believe in making money and do you have lots of it now?
3. Are you willing to act like you're poor when needed?
4. Will you collude when we tell you to?
   28. RMc's Unenviable Situation Posted: September 05, 2017 at 07:48 PM (#5526589)
Cleveland (and, painful as it is for me personally to admit, Pittsburgh) has a century and a half of baseball history, but a lot has changed in 150 years, and it can't profitably support a major league baseball team anymore.

Nonsense. I remember when Bill James wrote an article in [RMc looks through his library] ah, here it is, the 1988 Baseball Almanac. In the article "Revolution" (p. 21) he writes: "This nation could now support, without any detectable loss of player quality, at very, very minimum, 200 major league baseball teams."

OK, that's nuts. But we are talking about a country of 323 million here, plus Canada, Mexico, Japan, etc.; a universe of perhaps 500 million potential baseball fans. One team per ten million people -- a heckuva lotta people -- equals fifty major league teams. It probably require a lot of things for that to happen, beginning with erasing baseball's anti-trust exemption, but...
   29. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: September 05, 2017 at 07:55 PM (#5526594)
James was writing about a separate issue, the issue of whether the quality of play would be watered down by radical expansion. He was arguing that, beyond a very brief adjustment period, it would not. He may be right.

But on the issue I wrote about: Absolutely it's true that the nation can profitably support dozens, possibly hundreds, of major league teams. The nation DOES support the Marlins and the Rays and the A's and etc. All of those teams draw very handsome profits--but it's more from national TV and revenue sharing than from local revenue. If the Rays had to support a major league payroll and major league player development operations relying only on local revenues... no chance.

Similarly, of course those teams can be competitive, at least occasionally. The Indians won the AL last year, the Rays won the AL ten years ago amid a multi-year run of success, the A's were highly successful with tiny payrolls way back when, the Pirates had a three year run where they could have won it all with better playoff luck.

I was commenting on a narrow issue, that it somewhat surprises me that the owners lust to expand within the U.S.; it seems dubious to me that it actually makes them significantly more money to put a team in San Antonio or Portland or wherever. Most of the revenue comes from national TV contracts and from the local operations of the ten or so biggest markets. How much money has been added to the pot in the past 20 years by the presence of teams in Miami and Tampa?
   30. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 05, 2017 at 08:01 PM (#5526598)
The curious thing about the modern baseball fan is that they (1) complain about high salaries and insist their team has to dump payroll when they're out of the pennant race AND (2) whine when their owners are cheap.


I never do 1).
   31. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: September 05, 2017 at 08:10 PM (#5526605)
It occurs to me now that the lust for expansion probably is substantially about those sweet, sweet new franchise fees. If it doesn't hurt the enterprise as a whole, the billions of dollars are just sitting there; why not pick 'em up?
   32. cardsfanboy Posted: September 05, 2017 at 08:33 PM (#5526627)
It occurs to me now that the lust for expansion probably is substantially about those sweet, sweet new franchise fees. If it doesn't hurt the enterprise as a whole, the billions of dollars are just sitting there; why not pick 'em up?


That and getting a toe hold on an emerging market before one of the other major sports develop the fanbase.

They sure did. And that rocketed them all the way up to 24th out of 30 in attendance this year.


Cleveland has had the second largest average boost in attendance from last season in baseball(5,271) the Braves have the largest(7,808) and only the Rockies(4,095), Brewers(2,671) and Diamondbacks(1,624) have had an increase of 1,000 or more per game. Last year Cleveland had the 5th largest attendance boost(2,289) from the previous season in baseball. They are trending in the right direction. There is no real reason to suspect that if they put a decent product out there, that they won't continue to improve on that attendance. They are 17 years removed from 3,000,000 fan seasons.

If baseball is doing well, then every team is averaging close to 30,000 per game, and someone has to be last in attendance. 30,000 per game is 2.43 million per season, Indians are on pace for just over 2mil this year, that is a jump from 1.38 mil in 2015 to 2mil in 2017... that doesn't really look like a city that can't support a team if they show the fans that they are willing to compete year in, year out.
   33. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: September 05, 2017 at 09:17 PM (#5526646)

That and getting a toe hold on an emerging market before one of the other major sports develop the fanbase.


That doesn't seem to make sense. MLB was the last sport to move into south Florida. Even hockey got there before baseball did.
   34. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: September 05, 2017 at 09:22 PM (#5526651)
MLB was the last sport to move into south Florida. Even hockey got there before baseball did.


Not true. Both the marlins and panthers started play in 1993, but the marlins started in Aoril, the panthers in October.
   35. cardsfanboy Posted: September 05, 2017 at 09:31 PM (#5526658)

That doesn't seem to make sense. MLB was the last sport to move into south Florida. Even hockey got there before baseball did.


It doesn't change the lust for expansion and reasoning why teams choose certain cities. As far as Florida goes, it doesn't mean they didn't want to expand there before that, it's just something that didn't happen, but teams have been threatening to move to Florida for a while before that.

Considering that both rounds of expansion for mlb after 1977 included adding teams to Florida, it doesn't seem like it was forgotten, it was just something that wasn't happening.
   36. cardsfanboy Posted: September 05, 2017 at 09:32 PM (#5526663)
Not true. Both the marlins and panthers started play in 1993, but the marlins started in Aoril, the panthers in October.

(original comment said Southern Florida, which I'm assuming he meant Tampa, not Miami)
   37. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: September 05, 2017 at 09:37 PM (#5526673)
Oh. No, I meant Miami but Misirlou is right, I actually thought the Panthers started play in the 1992-1993 season but that was the Lightning. Still, I don't think "seizing emerging markets" was the idea there; it's just Miami and Tampa were big growing cities at the time. And they are plenty big enough cities; I don't know that putting a major league team in San Antonio will necessarily turn out any better than putting one in Miami did.
   38. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: September 05, 2017 at 09:39 PM (#5526679)
(original comment said Southern Florida, which I'm assuming he meant Tampa, not Miami)


The university of South Florida may be in Tampa, but that doesn't mean that Tampa is in South Florida.
   39. cardsfanboy Posted: September 05, 2017 at 10:18 PM (#5526710)

The university of South Florida may be in Tampa, but that doesn't mean that Tampa is in South Florida.


Yep, my lack of geography knowledge really shone there. I made the assumption, double checked the map, and somehow still inverted the two cities in my mind...pfftttt....
   40. Tim D Posted: September 05, 2017 at 10:36 PM (#5526719)
San Antonio MSA is bigger than Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, KC and Milwaukee. But I'd suggest better markets would be third teams in New York Metro and SoCal. A team in northern New Jersey makes all kinds of sense. So does a team in Riverside/San Bernardino; because it is in the shadow of LA, no one notices that it is a bigger MSA than all but 12 MLB teams. It's nearly twice the size of San Antonio.

Of course the current residents in those markets would all likely oppose it. But if TV is where the money is, expansion in the major markets is the way to go.

There should be no reason whatsoever that Miami, the 6th largest MSA, cannot support a team. No one has really tried in my book. Stadium issues, poor ownership, etc. The same goes for Tampa. The stadium is absolutely killing them.

And then there is Montreal, which still could be a great market. Give them Seattle's stadium and they would do fine (with decent ownership).

Big business vetting processes consist of intense scrutiny of one's financial wherewithal and background. It's not easy to get on a short list, let alone get a team. Jeffrey Loria got in as a minority owner, buying 25% of the Expos. He gradually took them over and then he and Selig orchestrated the whole contraction fiasco, followed by the Miami deal. Loria got his nose in the camel's tent and then cozied up to Bud. He's a textbook bad owner, and it is to MLB's disgrace that he was allowed to wreck two franchises. Bud Bud decided Montreal was untenable and that Loria deserved another chance. Maybe that should go on Selig's HOF plaque.
   41. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 05, 2017 at 10:51 PM (#5526726)
A team in northern New Jersey makes all kinds of sense.

No, it really doesn't. There isn't a municipality big and rich enough to build a stadium, and the traffic would be an absolute nightmare. All mass transit in NY is designed to bring people into Manhattan in the morning, and out in the evening. There's no mass transit infrastructure to bring 40,000 people to a random borough in NJ.

Not to mention given NJ's astronomic level of corruption, the new stadium would probably cost $2.5B.
   42. Howie Menckel Posted: September 05, 2017 at 11:06 PM (#5526734)

A team in northern New Jersey makes all kinds of sense.

No, it really doesn't. There isn't a municipality big and rich enough to build a stadium, and the traffic would be an absolute nightmare. All mass transit in NY is designed to bring people into Manhattan in the morning, and out in the evening. There's no mass transit infrastructure


this would explain why the Giants, Jets, Nets, and Devils have never played in a Meadowlands stadium or arena - all before NJ ever built a mass transit solution that now serves about 10K per NFL game and 20K for concerts like U2.

there are OTHER reasons why this won't happen - but it's not that one.
   43. TomH Posted: September 06, 2017 at 08:14 AM (#5526868)
so much oddity in this thread:

The vetting process to join the MLB Ownership Group most likely consists of only a few questions:
1. Are you a man, preferably white?

-----------stated in a thread where black guys bought a team...

Not to mention given NJ's astronomic level of corruption, the new stadium would probably cost $2.5B.

---------NJ state population rank in USA is 11th. Is their corruption so astronomic that it ranks in the top 2? Above al of the other states whose residents claim massive corruption?

let's pick six teams with rock bottom attendance year after year

---------in 1999, the Indians LED the AL in attendance. Yes, the city is bleeding, but change can come quickly.
   44. Lassus Posted: September 06, 2017 at 08:19 AM (#5526870)
Not to mention given NJ's astronomic level of corruption, the new stadium would probably cost $2.5B.
---------NJ state population rank in USA is 11th. Is their corruption so astronomic that it ranks in the top 2? Above al of the other states whose residents claim massive corruption?

let's pick six teams with rock bottom attendance year after year
---------in 1999, the Indians LED the AL in attendance. Yes, the city is bleeding, but change can come quickly.

I can give you #1, but these two are really not remotely odd.
   45. Joe Bivens Will Take a Steaming Dump Posted: September 06, 2017 at 08:25 AM (#5526871)
More cruel than rescinding DACA! I'll never root for the Marlins now.
   46. Rally Posted: September 06, 2017 at 09:16 AM (#5526902)
I mean, I think most MLB teams could perform a ritual sacrifice on the infield before the first home stand of the year, change the nickname and colors of their team every month, and construct a fire maze lined with cannibals outside their turn styles and fans would still climb over themselves to get to games or watch them on TV.


As long as the team wins. If they lose you'll have to try some new gimmicks.
   47. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 06, 2017 at 09:17 AM (#5526903)
this would explain why the Giants, Jets, Nets, and Devils have never played in a Meadowlands stadium or arena - all before NJ ever built a mass transit solution that now serves about 10K per NFL game and 20K for concerts like U2.

there are OTHER reasons why this won't happen - but it's not that one.


The Giants and Jets play 10 games (including preseason) most on Sundays, so they don't really coun't. 81 games a year with fans coming into a town, mostly on weeknights at rush hour, is a whole different animal. Also, if you hadn't noticed, NJ Transit has a bit of an infrastructure problem right now.

The Meadowlands couldn't keep the Nets, now they're going to successfully host a baseball team? The Nets and Devils drew primarily a NJ fanbase, and didn't draw particularly well, even with <20,000 seats to fill. If you team is going to have to justify a $2B+ stadium, and MLB expansion fees, you're going to have to draw from Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, plus the other suburban areas. The infrastructure just isn't there.

A third team that only is supported by a third (being generous) of the NJ market, and virtually none of the rest of the metro area, is going to make the Rays look like a massive success.
   48. Rennie's Tenet Posted: September 06, 2017 at 09:25 AM (#5526912)
I'm sure that maintaining the antitrust exemption has at least some bearing on expansion plans. If a growing area isn't brought into the system, then its politicians aren't going to be happy.
   49. Tim D Posted: September 06, 2017 at 10:19 AM (#5526967)
If the Giants and Jets can get 80,000 people to 20 games a year, including preseason, plus playoffs (well, not the Jets), a MLB team can get 40,000 there. The traffic in Jersey is atrocious, but it's certainly not as bad as LA that draws huge numbers even though Chavez is adjacent to downtown, with no mass transit to speak of, freeways that are impassable more or less 24/7, and parking that is a nightmare. And besides, everyone here agrees that TV is where the money is. A Jersey team would get huge TV money. In either league.
   50. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 06, 2017 at 10:28 AM (#5526978)
If the Giants and Jets can get 80,000 people to 20 games a year, including preseason, plus playoffs (well, not the Jets), a MLB team can get 40,000 there. The traffic in Jersey is atrocious, but it's certainly not as bad as LA that draws huge numbers even though Chavez is adjacent to downtown, with no mass transit to speak of, freeways that are impassable more or less 24/7, and parking that is a nightmare. And besides, everyone here agrees that TV is where the money is. A Jersey team would get huge TV money. In either league.

Again, Sunday vs. weekday night is huge for traffic.

Who are all these New Yorkers who want to watch the 3rd team rather than the Yankees or Mets that they've grown up with? The money is only big in TV if you have the ratings.
   51. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: September 06, 2017 at 11:01 AM (#5527041)
Is their corruption so astronomic that it ranks in the top 2?


Yes? From my experience Rhode Island is up there, but I'm comfortable with those being #1 and #2 in some order.
   52. Tim D Posted: September 06, 2017 at 11:15 AM (#5527066)
"Again, Sunday vs. weekday night is huge for traffic."

Yeah, it is in LA too. And plenty of other places.

"Who are all these New Yorkers who want to watch the 3rd team..."

Maybe some of the 20 million or so that live there. The market is 10 times bigger than some markets. Twice as big as any except LA. Just maybe there are some people who can't get to the Bronx or Queens as easy as they can get to north Jersey. And just maybe an expansion team wouldn't charge as much for tickets.
   53. Tim D Posted: September 06, 2017 at 11:18 AM (#5527070)
"Yes? From my experience Rhode Island is up there, but I'm comfortable with those being #1 and #2 in some order."

You've obviously never been to Illinois. Their ex-governors go to prison as a rule.
   54. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 06, 2017 at 11:51 AM (#5527118)
Maybe some of the 20 million or so that live there. The market is 10 times bigger than some markets. Twice as big as any except LA. Just maybe there are some people who can't get to the Bronx or Queens as easy as they can get to north Jersey. And just maybe an expansion team wouldn't charge as much for tickets.

Some, sure. But more than in an entire metro area that has no team?

I have a feeling that being the only show in town in Charlotte or Portland is beeter economically than being a distant 3rd in northern NJ. Especially in terms of corporate support.

Now, if the new team could get a stadium in Brooklyn, they could take a big bite out the Mets natural market, and be a big success. But, I don't see NYC paying for a 3rd stadium, and the economics wouldn't work for private development. A stadium in NY is going to cost three times what it would elsewhere (e.g. Marlins park is estimated at $625M, vs. over $2B for DNYS).
   55. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: September 06, 2017 at 12:09 PM (#5527144)
Derek Jeter’s reported plan to slash Marlins’ payroll is cruel

What is funny to me is that people honestly believe Jeter is calling the shots. He is putting what, 2% of the money up for this? If that. He is just there as the public face, a guy they can put out in front so that fans and media will lap it up. And they may delegate some actual baseball decisions to him. But when it comes to things like payroll? It will be the real money making those calls, not Jeter.
   56. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 06, 2017 at 12:27 PM (#5527161)
What is funny to me is that people honestly believe Jeter is calling the shots. He is putting what, 2% of the money up for this? If that. He is just there as the public face, a guy they can put out in front so that fans and media will lap it up. And they may delegate some actual baseball decisions to him. But when it comes to things like payroll? It will be the real money making those calls, not Jeter.

Of course. He's jsut the front man.
   57. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 06, 2017 at 12:29 PM (#5527163)
If the Giants and Jets can get 80,000 people to 20 games a year, including preseason, plus playoffs (well, not the Jets), a MLB team can get 40,000 there.


The Giants and the Jets are the only NFL options in the area. Every football fan in New York City and its environs is already a Giants or Jets fan. It's hard to see why someone in Hicksville or New Rochelle would switch allegiance from the Yankees or Mets to a team that's more than an hour away in northern New Jersey.
   58. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 06, 2017 at 12:32 PM (#5527168)
What is funny to me is that people honestly believe Jeter is calling the shots. He is putting what, 2% of the money up for this? If that. He is just there as the public face, a guy they can put out in front so that fans and media will lap it up. And they may delegate some actual baseball decisions to him. But when it comes to things like payroll? It will be the real money making those calls, not Jeter.


Jeter's role here will be exactly the same as George W. Bush's was when he "owned" the Texas Rangers.
   59. Tim D Posted: September 06, 2017 at 12:35 PM (#5527169)
"It will be the real money making those calls, not Jeter."

Absolutely.

"being the only show in town in Charlotte or Portland is beeter economically than being a distant 3rd in northern NJ."

Metro Portland is 2.3M, Charlotte 2.4M. North Jersey alone is 3.5M or so, plus 500K on Staten Island. Less than 2 hours from Philly. The Devils are in the bottom third in NHL attendance but they draw more than the Islanders in either Nassau or Brooklyn.

And there is exponentially more corporate support available in NY/NJ than anyplace else. The most in the world.
   60. Tim D Posted: September 06, 2017 at 12:39 PM (#5527178)
And it's hard to see why someone in Paterson or Princeton or Jersey City wouldn't want to support a new team, or at least go to the games, which would be both closer and cheaper. 23M in NYC MSA. TEN times bigger than Charlotte or Portland.
   61. Tim D Posted: September 06, 2017 at 12:40 PM (#5527180)
And if the NFL put a team in Manhattan or the Bronx they would be sold out in 10 minutes. The Giants and Jets would be fine.
   62. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: September 06, 2017 at 12:44 PM (#5527183)
You've obviously never been to Illinois.


Oh, so where the hell was I when I had to pay $10 in tolls to drive through a decaying city and be spat out on Malcolm X Boulevard?
   63. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 06, 2017 at 12:59 PM (#5527195)
And it's hard to see why someone in Paterson or Princeton or Jersey City wouldn't want to support a new team, or at least go to the games, which would be both closer and cheaper. 23M in NYC MSA. TEN times bigger than Charlotte or Portland.

But, if you're a baseball fan in NJ, you're probably already a Yankee or Met fan. Why would you switch? If you put the Padres in my back yard, I wouldn't go to the games.

If they have to be significantly cheaper that the Yankees and Mets, then your revenue is going to be much lower.
   64. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: September 06, 2017 at 01:35 PM (#5527236)
So does a team in Riverside/San Bernardino; because it is in the shadow of LA, no one notices that it is a bigger MSA than all but 12 MLB teams. It's nearly twice the size of San Antonio.
Do they have any kind of corporate base for the suites though?
   65. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: September 06, 2017 at 01:59 PM (#5527262)
It would be a colossal mistake and deeply wrong on the part of Jeter and Sherman to come to Miami and immediately tear things down.


Derek Jeter: Yankee Idol....World Series hero....Corporate raider?
   66. Tim D Posted: September 06, 2017 at 02:17 PM (#5527276)
"Do they have any kind of corporate base for the suites though?"

Yes, I lived there. Plenty of Fortune 500 influence there, banks, real estate, big law firms, insurance, etc.
   67. Tim D Posted: September 06, 2017 at 02:23 PM (#5527282)
"If you put the Padres in my back yard, I wouldn't go to the games."

I live only 30 minutes from Comerica in Detroit. My commute is less than half of what it took to go to an Angels or especially Dodgers game when I lived in So Cal. Even with that short of a commute, and the Tigers being my team, if an NL team came into Detroit I would go to plenty of games and watch them on TV. Not to say Detroit could support another team, but proximity is a big factor. Tampa would be in much better shape if people could just get to the stadium. I think you underestimate how many people would be thrilled with a third team in NY.
   68. Jeff Frances the Mute Posted: September 06, 2017 at 02:52 PM (#5527308)
Loria didn't have a lot of debt because he was so notoriously cheap on everything. The Jeter group is probably heavily leveraged, but within limits. The notion that they will invest $1.2B, then run down the value of the franchise, at least short term, doesn't really pass the smell test. Especially for the want of say $50-60M a year in payroll (4-5% of acquisition cost). I'm speculating, but I have a strong suspicion the source of these stories has an axe to grind, so is snarking publicly at the group. Let's see what they actually do.


Loria had nearly $400 million in debt that the new ownership group assumed and the new ownership group has a total of over $700 million in debt. Much of it is structured as preferred shares to satisfy the debt rules, but it functions like debt. For instance, the $175 million they borrowed from MSD has a 14% interest rate and a 3 year payback, but that $175 million is considered equity. There is no way they can meet their debt obligations and keep the payroll above $100 million.
   69. Tim D Posted: September 06, 2017 at 02:58 PM (#5527320)
"no way they can meet their debt obligations and keep the payroll above $100 million"

So you know how much money they have? Your team of accountants has reviewed all the financial statements and concluded this to be true? Bet you a six pack the Marlins payroll doesn't go below $100M.
   70. Karl from NY Posted: September 06, 2017 at 03:36 PM (#5527383)
For NJ, look at the Devils for your example. They did everything as right as a franchise can: won three titles, had a greatest-of-all-time career star, got a new arena in the one place with accessible transportation... and even when they were good, still drew attendance in the bottom-half of the league.

Football is completely different than the other sports because the "NJ" teams are really NY. People will drive twice a month from NY for the Giants and Jets, sure. But nobody is switching from the Rangers to go to the Devils twice a week, and even less would switch away from the Yankees every weeknight. NJ alone without NYC doesn't have enough of a population concentration to support a major-league team. The Devils barely scrape by and the Nets left.
   71. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: September 06, 2017 at 05:55 PM (#5527504)
It's also worth noting that the Nets and Islanders' move to Brooklyn (the Nets are officially the Brooklyn Nets now, the Islanders retain the pretense of being the New York Islanders) has been a disaster for both teams thus far.
   72. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: September 06, 2017 at 07:48 PM (#5527535)
Derek Jeter: Yankee Idol....World Series hero....Corporate raider?


Womb raider.
   73. Walt Davis Posted: September 06, 2017 at 08:02 PM (#5527537)
There's a difference between the immediate success and the long-term success of an expansion franchise. Sure, a 3rd team in NY metro would have a tough time drawing Yankee and Mets fans ... at first. Once they got good, especially if the Mets remain dysfunctional, they would draw well. And even if they 'struggle' relative to Yanks/Mets, they'll almost certainly do well enough to stay out of the bottom 3rd. So maybe they only get to be the Astros or Phillies, not the Yanks or Dodgers ... that's still a lot better than a Charlotte.

And it's not like the NY metro area is likely to start losing population while there's no reason to expect Cleveland or Cincy or Pitt or KC to grow substantially. So this imbalance only gets worse, requiring more revenue sharing, more payroll restrictions and wider rifts between large and small market owners.

Still, on the general topic of expansion and population ... I again feel compelled to point out that, like nearly all Western countries, the post-baby boom population growth is nearly entirely driven by adult immigration. Birth rates have been at/near replacement level for a long time now. It is presumably harder to create a baseball fan out of an adult immigrant and that presumably means baseball fandom is less likely to be passed to the first generation of children as well. Of course a lot of that immigration has been from baseball-playing countries so baseball might be in a better spot than some other sports.

Even beyond baseball being uncool and the increasingly splintered sports marketplace, the retirement and death of the boomers (that's me, barely!) suggests a stagnant or declining future fan base for any of the traditional American sports.

This is also relevant to the talent pool question. The number of (say) aged 15-19 year-olds peaked in the early 80, declined through most of the 90s, started rebounding a bit in the 00s and recently returned to 1980s levels. If there's been any growth in the talent pool since the early 80s, it's due to expansion into the LA/Asian player pools or some general trend in better developing/identifying baseball talent in the US.
   74. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: September 06, 2017 at 08:36 PM (#5527552)
It seems pointless to talk about a third NYC team, inasmuch as the Yankees will never, ever in a billion years allow that to happen.
   75. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: September 06, 2017 at 08:47 PM (#5527554)
Why not?
   76. The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 06, 2017 at 09:13 PM (#5527558)
It seems pointless to talk about a third NYC team, inasmuch as the Yankees will never, ever in a billion years allow that to happen.

The opposition from the Mets would be much more intense - they're barely hanging on, as it is.
   77. Howie Menckel Posted: September 06, 2017 at 10:45 PM (#5527595)
Yes? From my experience Rhode Island is up there, but I'm comfortable with those being #1 and #2 in some order.

Trump once told me that doing business is most brutal in NJ, RI, and LA in terms of elected officials wanting to "wet their beak"

IL should be a contender - but not sure if he has done business there, beyond a Chicago hotel that took place a bit after this comment

who was our late, great MLB territory BBTF guy who died hiking, I think, a decade ago?

he had pointed out that the excluded territory for a non-vetoable 3rd franchise by Mets and Yankees included remote counties - except Passaic.

Clifton is a qualifying city just a few miles from the Meadowlands. not sure MLB ever closed the loophole.
   78. DJS, the Digital Dandy Posted: September 07, 2017 at 02:21 AM (#5527625)
Doug Pappas? Though I don't think he posted on BTF.
   79. QLE Posted: September 07, 2017 at 02:45 AM (#5527627)
who was our late, great MLB territory BBTF guy who died hiking, I think, a decade ago?


That sounds like Doug Pappas, but I can't seem to find that remark-and SABR still has virtually everything he wrote on their website.

And, to interject on the other third franchise suggested here: As someone who spent several years in Riverside, I'm not convinced the Inland Empire could support a baseball franchise due to several different issues:

1) The size of the metropolitan area is misleading, as it is including every resident of both Riverside County and San Bernardino County. A substantial number of those residents live in places like northern San Bernardino County or eastern Riverside County, who for geographic reasons aren't likely to be regularly attending games.

2) The highways in the Inland Empire are largely designed to service Los Angeles, not points in the Inland Empire- any place you could put a stadium in the population core of the Inland Empire would mean a difficult drive for other residents.

3) 2) is a big issue, because a lot of the residents of the Inland Empire are commuters- I'm not sure what patience a resident of Fontana will have for going to Riverside for an evening ball game if they have to commute to and from Los Angeles every weekday.

4) There is commuter rail in the Inland Empire- but I don't think it could easily handle baseball crowds, and at any rate many of the stations are not in locations where a baseball stadium could easily be put in.

5) I'm not sure how strong the population base is in the Inland Empire for season ticket sales and the like- it isn't really a place of high wealth, and quite a few of the places where wealth is present are ones where the demographics aren't helpful for a new baseball team.

6) I question the claim that there is corporate wealth likely to invest in the really expensive seats- a lot of the big business in the area tend to use it as where they have warehouses, not corporate headquarters, and, while there are some substantial businesses, a lot of the other major employers in the area are ones that either can't or won't be buying luxury suites.

7) The Inland Empire is an area that has seen rapid suburbanization since the 1980s- which means that a large hunk of the newcomers that are interested in baseball have preexisting loyalties that will be hard to shake.

All in all, it probably would be a better choice than some of the other areas that have been suggested- but that says more about how those places are bad choices than how the Inland Empire is a good one.
   80. stevegamer Posted: September 07, 2017 at 05:42 AM (#5527633)
If you are going to put a team in North Jersey, do you want them:

1. In the NL, so that you can capture both Phillies & Mets fans who may be closer to that park, or come to root for their team on a road trip?
2. In the AL, so that you capture Yankee fans when the Yankees come to play?

I think it doesn't matter much which league they would be in as far as building a fanbase - they would very likely need to hope to capture young fans who are unestablished, and also hope to grab the fans of the NYC team in the other league as a somewhat preferred second team in the other league.
   81. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: September 07, 2017 at 09:20 AM (#5527681)
I think the NL for the proximity of Phillies and Mets fans.

Count me among those that think a team in North Jersey would be fine, long-term. In addition to NJ fans, I think you'd draw a fair number of folks from Manhattan and Brooklyn as well. Someone who lives or works downtown could get to Newark much quicker than Citi or NYS.
   82. Howie Menckel Posted: September 07, 2017 at 09:36 AM (#5527690)
yes, Doug Pappas.
his work may simply have been referenced here.
   83. Tim D Posted: September 07, 2017 at 10:14 AM (#5527720)
Re #79, agree with these limitations to an extent, although I think it is far less of a commuter region than it used to be. Much more business located in Riverside, Corona and Cucamonga/Ontario these days. People in the Coachella Valley, Palm Springs and the like, have to drive 2+ hours to see MLB. Cut that in half and a lot of them (demographically wealthy retirees) would make the trip. There are definitely significant sized working class, poorer areas, but that is true of LA and Orange County as well. There is a lot more money in the Empire than 20 years ago, certainly not the high end wealth of Bel Air and Newport Beach, but Riverside has plenty of $750,000 houses. Plus so many people are transplants their loyalties are to the Yankees, Red Sox, Mets, Tigers, Cubs, etc. About the freeways, they go all over, and while traffic to/from LA and OC is bad, inside the Empire is less so. A team near Ontario Airport would be pretty easy to access and you'd get a lot of folks from east LA County as well. Limitations yes, but better than many areas as you point out.
   84. Karl from NY Posted: September 07, 2017 at 10:18 AM (#5527726)
In addition to NJ fans, I think you'd draw a fair number of folks from Manhattan and Brooklyn as well.

The Devils don't. PATH trains after a Devils game have maybe 100 people going back to the city. Manhattanites and Brooklynites don't give two sh|ts about NJ.
   85. Lassus Posted: September 07, 2017 at 10:32 AM (#5527737)
A team near Ontario Airport would be pretty easy to access and you'd get a lot of folks from east LA County as well. Limitations yes, but better than many areas as you point out.

I'd agree with this, there's a lot of population out there that wouldn't go to the Dodgers; although at the same time, Riverside's not that far from Angels Stadium.
   86. Hysterical & Useless Posted: September 07, 2017 at 03:53 PM (#5528020)
the Islanders retain the pretense of being the New York Islanders)


Brooklyn is on the western tip of the Island of Long.
   87. RMc's Unenviable Situation Posted: September 07, 2017 at 06:36 PM (#5528147)
But nobody is switching from the Rangers to go to the Devils twice a week

My buddy, the Devils season-ticket-holder, did exactly this about 15 years ago. (Of course, he lives in the Hudson Valley, not NYC.)

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