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Postby Pirates4Life » Mon Dec 18, 2006 3:15 pm

Funny, I don't think that the amount of money some of these players make is the problem at all. If that's what the market is, that's not a problem.

The problem with the system is that not all teams have an equal chance to spend that money and not all teams incur the same risk by spending it. Not all teams have the chance to sign free agents, and not all teams have the chance to keep their players. If the Pirates sign a player to a $10 million per year deal and he flops, the results are far more crippling than when the Yankees do it.

A salary floor is definitely needed, but unless there's a salary cap, it wouldn't serve any purpose. What's the incentive for the Pirates to spend an additional $10 million per year on a mediocre player who won't make a difference when they'll still be outspent by 2 or 3 times by teams like the Red Sox and Yankees.

Sure, in ANY system, teams with better front offices will have success. In the NFL, teams with good front offices maintain success for that reason, not because of an inherent advantage in the system. To me, the Yankees are one of the poorest run organizations in sports... when you have the kind of built-in advantage they have and can't win a championship over this many years, it's a sign of nothing more than poor management.

Until that problem is fixed, color me unimpressed by the Yankees making the playoffs every year over teams they outspend by $100 to $150 million, only to lose to teams that are run far better.
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Postby The Cow » Mon Dec 18, 2006 3:48 pm

Pirates4Life wrote:Funny, I don't think that the amount of money some of these players make is the problem at all. If that's what the market is, that's not a problem.

The problem with the system is that not all teams have an equal chance to spend that money and not all teams incur the same risk by spending it. Not all teams have the chance to sign free agents, and not all teams have the chance to keep their players. If the Pirates sign a player to a $10 million per year deal and he flops, the results are far more crippling than when the Yankees do it.

A salary floor is definitely needed, but unless there's a salary cap, it wouldn't serve any purpose. What's the incentive for the Pirates to spend an additional $10 million per year on a mediocre player who won't make a difference when they'll still be outspent by 2 or 3 times by teams like the Red Sox and Yankees.

Sure, in ANY system, teams with better front offices will have success. In the NFL, teams with good front offices maintain success for that reason, not because of an inherent advantage in the system. To me, the Yankees are one of the poorest run organizations in sports... when you have the kind of built-in advantage they have and can't win a championship over this many years, it's a sign of nothing more than poor management.

Until that problem is fixed, color me unimpressed by the Yankees making the playoffs every year over teams they outspend by $100 to $150 million, only to lose to teams that are run far better.


I agree with you 100% ;-D Its nice to hear from a fan of a small market team on this topic because fans of small market teams have a completely different perspectives on this issue than those fans from large market teams. Small market teams want a fighting chance or a fair chance, whereas the large market teams want to keep their advantage. I think fans from the big market teams need to take off their blinders on this topic. I think fans from big market teams don't want the system to change simply because they know their teams have a huge advantage over small market teams. If all teams had an equal shot at signing FA's I don't think Boston and New York would contend every year one of them may actually finish in last place once in a while. If the system were to change the emphasis on winning would lean even more heavily on management making good decisions and likewise it would switch away from how much money is spent. Is that a bad thing?

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Postby Pirates4Life » Mon Dec 18, 2006 3:56 pm

The Cow wrote:
Pirates4Life wrote:Funny, I don't think that the amount of money some of these players make is the problem at all. If that's what the market is, that's not a problem.

The problem with the system is that not all teams have an equal chance to spend that money and not all teams incur the same risk by spending it. Not all teams have the chance to sign free agents, and not all teams have the chance to keep their players. If the Pirates sign a player to a $10 million per year deal and he flops, the results are far more crippling than when the Yankees do it.

A salary floor is definitely needed, but unless there's a salary cap, it wouldn't serve any purpose. What's the incentive for the Pirates to spend an additional $10 million per year on a mediocre player who won't make a difference when they'll still be outspent by 2 or 3 times by teams like the Red Sox and Yankees.

Sure, in ANY system, teams with better front offices will have success. In the NFL, teams with good front offices maintain success for that reason, not because of an inherent advantage in the system. To me, the Yankees are one of the poorest run organizations in sports... when you have the kind of built-in advantage they have and can't win a championship over this many years, it's a sign of nothing more than poor management.

Until that problem is fixed, color me unimpressed by the Yankees making the playoffs every year over teams they outspend by $100 to $150 million, only to lose to teams that are run far better.


I agree with you 100% ;-D Its nice to hear from a fan of a small market team on this topic because fans of small market teams have a completely different perspectives on this issue than those fans from large market teams. Small market teams want a fighting chance or a fair chance, whereas the large market teams want to keep their advantage. I think fans from the big market teams need to take off their blinders on this topic. I think fans from big market teams don't want the system to change simply because they know their teams have a huge advantage over small market teams. If all teams had an equal shot at signing FA's I don't think Boston and New York would contend every year one of them may actually finish in last place once in a while. If the system were to change the emphasis on winning would lean even more heavily on management making good decisions and likewise it would switch away from how much money is spent. Is that a bad thing?

The Cow


To be fair, if I were the Yankees, why would I want the system to be more fair? Until the small market teams - or even the mid-market teams that want the system changed - band together and force a change, baseball is always going to be inherently favored to the teams that have the financial flexibility to sign free agents and keep their own talent at the same time.

Share revenue to the point that each team can spend between $80 million and $120 million... then let's see which team is the best run organization in baseball. I wonder if David Littlefield could look a little better with a $200 million cushion to fall back on.

I would've loved to have seen another work-stoppage instead of having the latest CBA as long as there would've been changes. Instead, they put a band-aid on a gaping wound and things will keep heading this direction.

And the big market teams will continue to point to the A's and Twins as proof that it can be done without acknowledging that only 5 of the past 48 playoff teams have had payrolls in the bottom third of the league.
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Postby mweir145 » Mon Dec 18, 2006 5:07 pm

Pirates4Life wrote:Share revenue to the point that each team can spend between $80 million and $120 million... then let's see which team is the best run organization in baseball. I wonder if David Littlefield could look a little better with a $200 million cushion to fall back on.

Exactly. They did this in hockey (the NHL went into a lockout for a year just to make it happen), and it's done wonders for the competitiveness of the league. Teams like the Leafs who got got by solely on their money can't do that anymore, and their management actually has to pay for the poor management decisions they have made over the last 5-10 years. I suspect it would have the same positive effect on competition in baseball (of course it wouldn't be positive for the big spenders, that's why I can't see it ever happening, and the MLBPA would never agree to it, either).
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Postby noseeum » Mon Dec 18, 2006 5:44 pm

In 2005, the Yankees contributed ~$76 million of their local revenue to the revenue sharing pool. The Red Sox contributed $52 million. This does not include the luxury tax payments.

The whole setup right now is ridiculous. Why should a small market team just be given that money? It should be like a subsidy. Using the Rays as an example, they should not have just been given $33 million. It should be at a minimum a dollar for dollar match. So if DRays pony up $33 mill of their own money, than they'll get $33 mill. If they pay less, they get less.

From 2003-2005, the Rays spent less on payroll, scouting and player development than they received. Note this includes their entire minor league budgets, not just the MLB salaries. During the period the Devil Rays received $158 million and spent $148 million. That should not be allowed.

The Rays aren't even a small market team. They are in a bigger market than the Astros. They have just been run so poorly that they put up small market numbers in terms of revenue. And why shouldn't they? The less they take in at the gate, the more they make in revenue sharing. Nice formula.
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Postby noseeum » Mon Dec 18, 2006 5:51 pm

Pirates4Life wrote:To be fair, if I were the Yankees, why would I want the system to be more fair? Until the small market teams - or even the mid-market teams that want the system changed - band together and force a change, baseball is always going to be inherently favored to the teams that have the financial flexibility to sign free agents and keep their own talent at the same time.

Share revenue to the point that each team can spend between $80 million and $120 million... then let's see which team is the best run organization in baseball. I wonder if David Littlefield could look a little better with a $200 million cushion to fall back on.

I would've loved to have seen another work-stoppage instead of having the latest CBA as long as there would've been changes. Instead, they put a band-aid on a gaping wound and things will keep heading this direction.

And the big market teams will continue to point to the A's and Twins as proof that it can be done without acknowledging that only 5 of the past 48 playoff teams have had payrolls in the bottom third of the league.


I can understand the initial reaction to thinking that NY has an unfair advantage. But if you are a "small market" fan, you need to hold your ownership accountable as well. These guys should not just be given money for nothing.

The most rational solution would be something where an independent party would judge the market potential for each team on an annual basis using a standard formula and add that into the figuring of revenue sharing. So if a team like the Pirates woefully underperformed it's market's potential, it wouldn't get a reward for that. It might even get a penalty because all of MLB benefits when each team is maximizing it's market.

If an owner continually got penalized financially for underperforming his market, he or she should be forced to sell the team. New owners of distressed teams would be given time to rehabilitate the team and meet targets.

A system where the team that makes the least money gets the most subsidies without investigating the underlying reasons for poor revenue performance is no incentive for improving things.
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Postby GotowarMissAgnes » Mon Dec 18, 2006 7:21 pm

Pirates4Life wrote:And the big market teams will continue to point to the A's and Twins as proof that it can be done without acknowledging that only 5 of the past 48 playoff teams have had payrolls in the bottom third of the league.


If you lay out $10,000 you expect to get a brand new Mercedes?

Why would we expect teams that refuse to compete to be competitive?

The payroll is a CHOICE the GM and owner make, not a good measure of their market.
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Postby Pirates4Life » Mon Dec 18, 2006 7:26 pm

noseeum wrote:
Pirates4Life wrote:To be fair, if I were the Yankees, why would I want the system to be more fair? Until the small market teams - or even the mid-market teams that want the system changed - band together and force a change, baseball is always going to be inherently favored to the teams that have the financial flexibility to sign free agents and keep their own talent at the same time.

Share revenue to the point that each team can spend between $80 million and $120 million... then let's see which team is the best run organization in baseball. I wonder if David Littlefield could look a little better with a $200 million cushion to fall back on.

I would've loved to have seen another work-stoppage instead of having the latest CBA as long as there would've been changes. Instead, they put a band-aid on a gaping wound and things will keep heading this direction.

And the big market teams will continue to point to the A's and Twins as proof that it can be done without acknowledging that only 5 of the past 48 playoff teams have had payrolls in the bottom third of the league.


I can understand the initial reaction to thinking that NY has an unfair advantage. But if you are a "small market" fan, you need to hold your ownership accountable as well. These guys should not just be given money for nothing.

The most rational solution would be something where an independent party would judge the market potential for each team on an annual basis using a standard formula and add that into the figuring of revenue sharing. So if a team like the Pirates woefully underperformed it's market's potential, it wouldn't get a reward for that. It might even get a penalty because all of MLB benefits when each team is maximizing it's market.

If an owner continually got penalized financially for underperforming his market, he or she should be forced to sell the team. New owners of distressed teams would be given time to rehabilitate the team and meet targets.

A system where the team that makes the least money gets the most subsidies without investigating the underlying reasons for poor revenue performance is no incentive for improving things.


I agree 100% with almost all of that, and believe me, I hold the Pirates front office responsible for not being able to field even a competitive team since the early 90's. Lots of stupid decisions that I won't get into.

However...

It's ridiculous for a team to pocket the money, but I have to assume that some of that money has been invested into the minor leagues and player development - in the case of the D-Rays, that's really starting to show up. Not all of that money SHOULD be used on a major league payroll until the team has developed a strong base of young talent to build around.

A penalty for underperformance is almost a double-penalty, and it would prevent a team like that from every improving. However, revenue sharing to the point that each team can realistically afford a solid payroll without sacrificing minor league development would solve a lot of problems.
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Postby Pirates4Life » Mon Dec 18, 2006 7:30 pm

GotowarMissAgnes wrote:
Pirates4Life wrote:And the big market teams will continue to point to the A's and Twins as proof that it can be done without acknowledging that only 5 of the past 48 playoff teams have had payrolls in the bottom third of the league.


If you lay out $10,000 you expect to get a brand new Mercedes?

Why would we expect teams that refuse to compete to be competitive?

The payroll is a CHOICE the GM and owner make, not a good measure of their market.


In some ways, you're right. In others, not so much.

Payroll is a choice, but each team has a limit as to what they can spend that's dependent on how much revenue they generate.

If the Yankees generate $350 million in revenue and the Pirates generate $150 million (just throwing the numbers out there), it's unreasonable to expect both teams to spend the same amount on payroll. The Yankees have the payroll they have not because of Steinbrenner's wealth, but because of the amount of revenue they have at their disposal.
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Postby noseeum » Mon Dec 18, 2006 8:12 pm

Pirates4Life wrote:In some ways, you're right. In others, not so much.

Payroll is a choice, but each team has a limit as to what they can spend that's dependent on how much revenue they generate.

If the Yankees generate $350 million in revenue and the Pirates generate $150 million (just throwing the numbers out there), it's unreasonable to expect both teams to spend the same amount on payroll. The Yankees have the payroll they have not because of Steinbrenner's wealth, but because of the amount of revenue they have at their disposal.


But by that logic, you'd be in a downward spiral. When your team stinks, your revenue goes down. If you continually cut spending as revenue drops, you'll be toast. You have to spend money to make money, so to speak. Make the right investments that will pay off.

Look at Ford. They're willing to lose BILLIONS a year to stay in the market. Insanely enough, that probably makes business sense for them in the long run.
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