As I said in my last post, schedules are hectic, and while much has happened in the Twins universe (new lights for the stadium, new attitude for Bill Smith, new shortstop) we here at Peanuts from Heaven remain inundated with non-Twins related things. So while we could blog regularly about topics like revising operation perspectives for Twin Cities health clinics, or ethical issues raised by AIDS education in New Delhi, we have spared you the crazy making world that both Stinky and I live in.
HOWEVER, oh best beloved, this does not mean that we are deaf to the cries of the baseball world. So when Scott Boras (pictured below) said: "I don't know what a mid-market franchise is. That's like a midsized aircraft carrier. [Mid-market teams] all have the potential to have an economic bomb", it reminded us of another key tool to use in surviving this strange new world where the Yankees are once again the most powerful team on the planet.
PIECE OF ADVICE NUMBER 2: Start looking for quarters in the sofa cushions.
After three years of (relatively) lower contracts that owners called "fiscal sanity" and the players union really wants to call "collusion", the sense that "money wins" is back in baseball, and that means that those of us with prudent owners (see Jim Pohlad, I'm being nice!) are in deep dog-doo if Boras gets his way.
At the heart of this is the idea that baseball teams make a S*** ton of money*. Which, they do. I'm currently (slowly) reading "National Pastime" by economists Stefan Szymanski and Andrew Zimbalist. In Chapter 5 (available for a peek at Google Books) the authors contend that baseball owners might cry penury, but they all line their coffers with sacks of gold. They run their teams to make a profit, hence the exorbitant ticket prices, concessions prices, etc. And while teams might appear to lose money, the corporate entities that own them seem to be always in the black (a little bit of monetary misdirection goes a long way, they contend). So, Boras is right in thinking that teams have money to spend.
However, just because teams have money doesn't mean they necessarily ought to spend it on player salaries. For instance, which would you rather have? Boras client Matt Holliday in left field, or Delmon Young, (slightly) cheaper seats, and lower beverage prices? Should we go after Jarod Washburn (another Boras client) this winter, or make do with Swarzak, Duensing, and a once a month dollar-dog night? Sure Scott Boras, mid-market teams have the potential to drop an economic bomb on the baseball landscape but we won't because dropping that economic bomb would level the city that supports them, diminish ticket prices and turn a profitable business into an unprofitable one.
(SIDE NOTE: Joe Mauer knows this, but still wants big money. Which we will give to him because he is represented by the Mickey Mouse of agents Ronald Shapiro (author of this book). So again thinking economically we could have a guy who could not hit in the AL West last year (Holliday) and a guy who couldn't pitch for the last two months last year (Washburn) or a once in a generation catcher like Mauer--tough choice.)
So what's the point of spending all the profits you make, especially when the team with the highest payroll hasn't won a championship since the year 2000? What's the point of ...I'm sorry...they won the what now? Oh, I'm sorry, I've been drinking heavily to forget that. Never mind.
Turn over those sofa cushions Jim! It's a new Yankpire order...time to spend accordingly
*S*** ton = 28 boat loads.