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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Madden: MLB commissioner Bud Selig has earned right to choose his replacement

...and he also invented The Steering Wheel of Death for the ‘54 Cadillac Eldorado! So let’s hear it for…..

Although Selig has deliberately and steadfastly avoided endorsing any candidate for his successor, it has stood to reason his No. 2 man, MLB COO Rob Manfred, would naturally evolve to the position by virtue of having been the point man for much of Selig’s legacy — as the chief labor negotiator for three collective bargaining agreements that were completed without a work stoppage; the drug sheriff who brokered with the players union the most comprehensive joint drug program in all of professional sports and successively prosecuted all the guilty parties, most notably Alex Rodriguez, in the Biogenesis case last summer; and the commissioner’s emissary who navigated through the courts in the takeaway and sale of the Dodgers from ruinous owner Frank McCourt.

Or as one baseball executive said to me Friday: “We’re coming off nearly 20 years of the most successful commissionership of all time and Rob’s been a very big part of it. If he’s seen as an extension of Bud, what’s so wrong with that?”

Nevertheless, there is a small cadre of owners, headed by White Sox board chairman Jerry Reinsdorf and the Angels’ Arte Moreno, that evidently does not view Manfred as the right and natural choice to succeed Selig.

...Reinsdorf has made no secret of the fact that he wants the owners to take advantage of the seemingly greatly weakened players union, which has lost control of the agents, and push hard for a salary cap in the upcoming labor negotiations. In that respect, however, he has a rather strange bedfellow in Moreno who, more than any owner in baseball other than possibly Detroit’s Mike Ilitch, has contributed to the latest escalation of salaries.

“Believe me,” said another baseball official, “the owners have no stomach for a labor fight. Arte Moreno a champion for a salary cap? What a joke! Who put a gun to his head to give Albert Pujols $250 million and Josh Hamilton $123 million? Even if they got a salary cap — which, even in their present state, the union would never agree to — don’t they realize that would require minimum payrolls of $150 million? How are all those teams like Tampa Bay, Miami, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Kansas City or even Jerry’s White Sox gonna be able to do that?”

Repoz Posted: May 25, 2014 at 07:11 AM | 20 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mlb

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   1. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: May 25, 2014 at 07:27 AM (#4713066)
Perhaps Bud is getting out at the right time because he foresees that 1994 is about to repeat itself as the owners insist on a hard cap that the union will never accept.
   2. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: May 25, 2014 at 08:22 AM (#4713072)
Something I don't understand: why does it follow from the introduction of a salary cap that there would necessarily be a salary floor of $150M?
   3. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: May 25, 2014 at 08:33 AM (#4713073)
That entire quote from "another baseball official" reads like everything he knows about baseball he heard on talk radio.
   4. Cleveland (need new name) fan Posted: May 25, 2014 at 08:57 AM (#4713075)
Something I don't understand: why does it follow from the introduction of a salary cap that there would necessarily be a salary floor of $150M?


They are extrapolating from the percentage of revenue other sports with a salary cap allocate to player salary. If baseball is worth 9 billion and if 50% is player salary, which is comparable to football and basketball, then you get about 150 million per team for payroll. Of course this doesn't take into effect the much larger expenses involved with playing 162 games vice 16 games for football or the cost of the minor leagues etc.
   5. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: May 25, 2014 at 09:28 AM (#4713078)
Reinsdorf is a moron. If he tries to smack the union, he'll get smacked right back. They were cowed by the roids thing, but the roids thing is basically over.
   6. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: May 25, 2014 at 09:40 AM (#4713079)
Nothing is over! Nothing! You just don't turn it off! It wasn't their war! You signed them, they didn't sign you! And they did what they had to do to win! But somebody wouldn't let them win! And they come back to the median and we see all those maggots at the BBWAA, protesting them, spitting. Calling them bicep juicer, and all kinds of vile crap! Who are they to protest them? In the field they had a code of honor, you inject my backside, I inject yours. Back here, there's nothing!
   7. GregQ Posted: May 25, 2014 at 09:43 AM (#4713081)
I thought that there had already been a selection committee to selected his successor in the past and the committee came up with Bud Selig.
   8. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: May 25, 2014 at 11:57 AM (#4713103)
They are extrapolating from the percentage of revenue other sports with a salary cap allocate to player salary. If baseball is worth 9 billion and if 50% is player salary, which is comparable to football and basketball, then you get about 150 million per team for payroll. Of course this doesn't take into effect the much larger expenses involved with playing 162 games vice 16 games for football or the cost of the minor leagues etc.


I think it's more along the lines that if you are going to put in a salary cap the salary floor that the union would accept would be so high as to be unrealistic. That's how I read it anyway.
   9. valuearbitrageur Posted: May 25, 2014 at 12:01 PM (#4713104)
In what world does an employee get to choose his successor? The commissioner has always been an employee of the owners and beholden to them. Whatever wrong headed plans they have, they'll pick a commissioner in sync with them. Manfred may be facing indictment too, I'd think the owners want to stay as far from him as possible.

And the last 20 years have been so successful in baseball because of revenues, just as they have been in the NBA, and in the NFL. A rising tide lifts all bozos, so David Stern gets to claim credit for the "global expansion" of the NBA, he was able to ignore endemic problems like the Clippers while revenues rode on the coat-tails of Jordan, Magic and Bird. And Selig gets to claim success while Bonds, McGwire & Sosa gave the sport massive positive publicity and record revenues, while he ignored steroids, game length, and other problems, then when cornered purchases stolen documents to ramrod through a ridiculous punishment to somehow declare "victory" on his last lap.

Do these guys think another commissioner would have said "no" as american discretionary spending increased and more was spent on tickets to their sport? Being a commissioner of a professional sport in the last 50 years is exactly like the old saw, being born on third base believing you hit a triple.
   10. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: May 25, 2014 at 12:36 PM (#4713110)
And the last 20 years have been so successful in baseball because of revenues, just as they have been in the NBA, and in the NFL. A rising tide lifts all bozos,

That's pretty much it.

Do these guys think another commissioner would have said "no" as american discretionary spending increased and more was spent on tickets to their sport?

Sure, but not any commissioner selected by the then- (or now-) existing set of baseball owners.
   11. boteman Posted: May 25, 2014 at 12:39 PM (#4713111)
In what world does an employee get to choose his successor?

The CEOs of privately-held and some publicy-held corporations have been known to choose their successors, typically their heirs, even though they are employed by the Board of Directors and serve at their discretion. It's in the interest of all involved to see to a smooth transition.

As an arbitrageur of pot I'd expect you to know this.
   12. cardsfanboy Posted: May 25, 2014 at 01:06 PM (#4713121)
Reinsdorf is a moron. If he tries to smack the union, he'll get smacked right back. They were cowed by the roids thing, but the roids thing is basically over.


Agreed. I think that Bud realized this with the salary cap thing and decided to back off on it, because it just wasn't worth the potential headache. It's one reason I support Bud in his desire to have him pick his successor, I don't trust the owners to make the right pick, that is both good for the owners and good for baseball. I think they'll focus on what is best for the owners and damn what is best for baseball.

At the same point in time I agree with KT, that it's not really that common for the outgoing person to pick his successor, it's not unusual as pointed out in post 11, but in a situation like this, it doesn't surprise me at all that some owners might want to go a different route.
   13. Cleveland (need new name) fan Posted: May 25, 2014 at 03:39 PM (#4713158)
I think it's more along the lines that if you are going to put in a salary cap the salary floor that the union would accept would be so high as to be unrealistic. That's how I read it anyway.


The NFL calculates the salary cap based on 48.5% of revenues
The NBA calculates the salary cap based on 51-49% of revenues

In 2013, MLB took in 8.5 billion dollars. Assuming 50% of revenues will be used for a salary cap, the hypothetical 2014 salary cap would be 141.66 million dollars. If you put a 90% salary floor, the hypothetical 2014 floor would be 127 million dollars.

Assuming MLB revenues keep increasing, a $150 million salary cap is highly realistic in the near future.
   14. Bhaakon Posted: May 25, 2014 at 05:41 PM (#4713197)
Assuming MLB revenues keep increasing, a $150 million salary cap is highly realistic in the near future.


I think that assumes near-100% revenue sharing. Baseball revenues are growing, true, but individual teams are still lagging far enough behind the average that they won't be able to support a salary floor in the 100 millions.
   15. Srul Itza At Home Posted: May 25, 2014 at 07:08 PM (#4713236)
Selig held his position as long as he did for a number of reasons, but a big one was that he made allies of enough of the owners. As a former owner, he knew where they were coming from, and he has essentially delivered what they want.

Most of the current owners know that things have been working well, and are not going to run off in a different direction just because Reindorf and Moreno think they have a better idea. I see nothing to indicate that those two have a lot of support.
   16. cardsfanboy Posted: May 26, 2014 at 01:56 AM (#4713333)
In 2013, MLB took in 8.5 billion dollars. Assuming 50% of revenues will be used for a salary cap, the hypothetical 2014 salary cap would be 141.66 million dollars. If you put a 90% salary floor, the hypothetical 2014 floor would be 127 million dollars.


It's very unlikely that MLB would have a team salary cap that high of a percentage, unlike NFL/NBA, MLB has to spend roughly 6-10 mil on the minor leagues, any salary cap negotiation would subtract that from the overall percentage.

Although at last look, MLB salaries is around 58% of revenue so even without forcing the teams the league on average is spending a good amount...drawback of course is that the money is top heavy.

I think that assumes near-100% revenue sharing. Baseball revenues are growing, true, but individual teams are still lagging far enough behind the average that they won't be able to support a salary floor in the 100 millions.


And that is the other major point against a salary cap, even with revenue sharing, baseballs revenue is regionalized. It's very unlikely that every team could afford a negotiated salary floor.
   17. valuearbitrageur Posted: May 26, 2014 at 02:12 AM (#4713335)
The CEOs of privately-held and some publicy-held corporations have been known to choose their successors, typically their heirs, even though they are employed by the Board of Directors and serve at their discretion. It's in the interest of all involved to see to a smooth transition. [/quote

No it's not, it's more important to hire the best replacement even if it rocks the boat.

And I believe this is rare in private companies, but common in public companies. Shareholders in public companies are not allowed to pick directors, the board is self perpetuating cronies and former company execs. In public companies, most CEOs control their boards, so they control their successors.

And believe it or not, I was CEO of a private company before. My board members protected their investments, as they should, I was not consulted in my replacement.

   18. madvillain Posted: May 26, 2014 at 02:26 AM (#4713337)
man I really want to frame #9 and present it to everyone everywhere that think people like Dave Brandon are doing a good job because "revenue imirite"

   19. Buck Coats Posted: May 26, 2014 at 10:55 AM (#4713387)
Although at last look, MLB salaries is around 58% of revenue so even without forcing the teams the league on average is spending a good amount...drawback of course is that the money is top heavy.


Where do you get 58 from? A Forbes article from January says 47% (but is admittedly only counting salary and benefits for the 40-man roster)
   20. cardsfanboy Posted: May 26, 2014 at 11:15 AM (#4713391)

Where do you get 58 from? A Forbes article from January says 47% (but is admittedly only counting salary and benefits for the 40-man roster)


Just a quick google search and had this article.

Of course, a large portion of revenue goes to players' salaries. In baseball, 59.5% of revenues goes directly to players,

Of course that is "askmen.com" I doubt they do the Forbes level of research and probably just going off reported revenue. Also couldn't find the year of that article...After more in depth research, it was probably based on 2001 numbers, as most reports I'm finding have mlb salaries at around 40% now.

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