The Money Talks
Ryne Oshiro, Staff Writer
Money, money, money. Many choices that people make in today’s society involve money. What job makes more money? How does one make more money? The list could go on and on. Obviously, not every job is paid equal, and just like in life nothing is set in stone, nor is it fair. The same goes for Major League Baseball. Not every team is created equal. It took the Chicago Cubs 108 years to eventually win another World Series title. Yet, not every team has the payroll to typically buy out players. The hometown Seattle Mariners have nowhere near the amount of money that the New York Yankees have, which spurs one question- is this fair?
To break down some details, the MLB is basically broken down into two levels, small market teams and big market teams. ‘The “big-market” designation refers to those teams that play in the nation’s consolidated statistical metropolitan areas (CSMAs); “small-market” refers to teams that play in smaller CSMAs.’ (Northwestern Business) So to put this into perspective, the small market teams generally have a smaller fan base, thus they do not spend as much money on players. On the other hand, big market teams have the ability to attract larger crowds and raise prices, which leads to them bringing in more revenue.
This is where things start to heat up. Teams who do have the big budget tend to get the better crop of players. When contracts expire, free agents often look to the best team to join, and also the most money to gain as well. For example, right now there is a high demand for two superstar players in Manny Machado and Bryce Harper. Small market teams such as the Oakland Athletics and San Diego Padres have no chance in landing these two players because of their budget restraints. They could have the nicest field and best fans, but their budget is stretched a lot thinner compared to other teams.
To put this into perspective, according to Forbes “The Yankees sit in their own group because they generate almost 20 percent more revenue than any other baseball team. The second group–Dodgers ($3 billion), Cubs ($2.9 billion), Giants ($2.85 billion), Red Sox ($2.8 billion)—are teams in big cities with very strong brands that transcend their markets.” This means that teams like the Dodges, Red Sox, and especially the Yankees can afford both players at the same time, while other teams can’t even afford one. “The Miami Marlins are tied with the Tampa Bay Rays for last in baseball with $219 million in revenue, they lose a lot of money and have trouble drawing fans.”
What does this mean for the MLB? Well, the same teams will then begin bidding on the best free agent players on the market, all while teams such as the Rays and Marlins are in the back barely making a minimum to keep their team afloat. Sure, this isn’t fair to the game and players, but this has been going on for a while now and without change, the same teams gain power. Yet, this hasn’t been a problem because in the past five years of baseball, no team has ever won two championships, so even if the Yankees buy every top player in baseball they still can’t easily buy the World Series.