Wednesday, March 23, 2011

It's all about the money

A few tidbits from the financial side of baseball:

We all have one, right?
If it sometimes seems as if a third of the state of Minnesota is wearing a Joe Mauer jersey on any given day ... well, it may be so. Mauer's jersey is second in overall sales in all of MLB. And Justin Morneau's is 15th. (The leader, as you might guess, is Derek Jeter.)

Forbes reports that the Twins value rose 21 percent because of Target Field and the accompanying increase in revenues. Forbes says the franchise is worth $491 million, which is a bit less than the MLB average -- but that average is distorted by the Yankees' $5.1 billion price tag.

Overall, even with the recession, the supposed value of MLB teams rose 7 percent, according to the magazine.

Of course, an economic asset's worth depends on what one can sell it for, and if you're not selling the asset, then it needs to generate money and cash flow. Forbes can paint a rosy picture of franchise valuation and simultaneously write of "baseball's debt disaster." Heavy doses here of the Mets and Madoff, the Dodgers and the McCourt divorce and the Rangers and Tom Hicks' bankruptcy.

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