A couple of weeks ago I defended the Yankees’ spending ways to a fan of some team that I have long forgotten about. But I didn’t forget what I told her:

“The Yankees spend money yes. They spend to improve the team and to provide the best team for their fans. Yes, they have money, they’re rich. Unfortunately, none of the other MLB teams spend like the Yankees. Did you know there are some other owners who are richer than the Yankees’ owners and they don’t reinvest in their team.”

“Umm…no,” was that woman’s answer and she shut up after that.

Now, thanks to Jason at Heartland Pinstripes, I have more figures to share with anyone else who wants to argue the salary cap. Jason’s argument lies within revenue sharing. The Yankees always lead the teams in revenue sharing because of how much they invest in their team. Here are some numbers I’d like to share from Jason’s post:

  • The $24 million paid to Milwaukee represented just over sixty percent of its $39,934,833 payroll that year.
  • Florida received $31 million in revenue sharing for 2005, yet refused to re-invest that money. In fact, that $31 million represented nearly half Florida’s combined payroll for the 2006-2008 seasons, $67,317,000, aided by its 2005 trade of Josh Beckett and Mike Lowell to Boston.
  • …Florida earning $43.3 million in 2006–tops in baseball– with a payroll just under $14 million, and the Royals earning $8.4 million in 2006 and $7.4 in 2007.
  • The Pirates were also profitable, pulling in $23.9 million in 2006, good for 3rd most profitable in baseball, and $17.6 million in 2007, 18th most profitable.  Yet they won a scant 67 and 68 games in 2006 and 2007 respectively, were 15th in attendance in the NL each year, and cut payroll from $46.7 million in 2006 to $38.5 million in 2007.
  • Based on its 2008 payroll of $21,836,500 Florida would have to increase its spending by roughly $68 million just to reach the league average.

Jason also argues that should baseball follow the other professional leagues and adopt a salary cap in 2011, then there would be spending minimums in place. This would impact teams such as Florida…

  • Based on its 2008 payroll of $21,836,500 Florida would have to increase its spending by roughly $68 million just to reach the league average.

Jason’s post is excellent. Now I have more information to share with other people who whine about the Yankees.

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