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Twins ranked 14th among MLB teams in value by Forbes... down two spots

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#1 Jim Crikket

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 09:21 PM

Forbes has published it's annual "Business of Baseball" feature, providing financial analysis of all 30 MLB teams.

The Twins rank 14th in value, down from 12th a year ago.

Also, pretty much middle of the pack in revenues and operating income.

The team's value rose only 4% last year (after rising 21% the year before). Only three teams failed to realize increases in value more than the Twins. The Royals value rose only 1%, while the Rays and Mets actually lost value.

The Forbes article can be found here:

http://www.forbes.co...ions/#p_1_s_a0_
I opine about the Twins and Kernels regularly at Knuckleballsblog.com while my alter ego, SD Buhr covers the Kernels for MetroSportsReport.com.

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#2 Highabove

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Posted 22 March 2012 - 02:47 AM

For a second year in a row, the Twins will realize revenue of 213 million dollars. The Twins sold 55000 less tickets last year, but their second year price increase more than made up for it. Gates sales were up one million dollars. The Twins profits(before taxes, etc.) dropped from 26.5 to 16.6 million dollars. The higher payroll might have been a reason for the Ten million dollar drop in profit. It appears that the Pohlad’s are attempting to recoup the 10 million dollars as quickly as possible. (Slashing payroll?) To some degree, this is being shortsighted after a 99 loss season. There will be plenty of opportunity to lower payroll during the upcoming rebuilding years. There is another interesting item the Forbes numbers show. Some of the most profitable teams in baseball are the little sisters of the poor. Teams such as Kansas City, Tampa and Cleveland, produce large profits by putting out a low cost product and accepting lower attendance. Are we eventually heading in this direction?

Edited by Highabove, 22 March 2012 - 12:29 PM.


#3 StormJH1

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Posted 22 March 2012 - 10:30 AM

To some degree, this is being shortsighted after a 99 loss season. There will be plenty of opportunity to lower payroll during the upcoming rebuilding years.


Sorry, but I just had to cringe when I read "upcoming rebuilding years", as if it has been an obvious foregone conclusion all along. Mauer will be 29 and Morneau will be 31 by mid-May. To me, if you can already predict that a rebuilding phase is coming, that means you messed up and you should already be rebuilding now. When they announced a $184 million deal for Mauer a few seasons ago, I think the expectation was that they were getting a star player for at least the first 5 years of that deal. I mean, it HAS to be the expectation for that kind of money, right?

I think you have to view this whole thing as part of the bigger picture. I'll compare it to my other favorite team - the Detroit Red Wings. The Wings have made the NHL playoffs for 20+ straight years. Over that span they have won 4 championships (last in 2008). Suffice it to say, the fanbase has an expectation of excellence. In fact, that's the case to the point where they struggle to draw attendance for the less sexy regular season matchups, and even in the early rounds of the Playoffs. The Wings also play in comparatively crummy old arena, that wouldn't exactly qualify as "world class". But their ticket prices are crazy high because there's a good chance you're looking at a Cup contender from year to year.

The Twins lost 99 games last year, but despite the fact that they've only won a single playoff series since 1992 (ouch), they also won a 5-team division 6 out of the last 10 years. And they do have a shiny new "world class" stadium to go with their product. So ticket prices are not going to go down, and this team really doesn't have the option of becoming a low budget, moderate profit model. (Oh, and the reason that teams like KC and Cleveland are able to survive in that manner is that they're just banking the luxury taxes from teams like New York and Boston and putting it towards the bottom line instead of investing in players).

5 teams had a payroll of less than $50 million in 2011. http://content.usato...b/salaries/team Which means that if Mauer had been on those teams, one guy would represent HALF of their entire salary. That can't be the case here.

#4 Fanatic Jack

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Posted 22 March 2012 - 12:08 PM

Jim, The Pohlad family is swimming in money since Target Field was built. They cut payroll by $15 million and will pocket another $28 million if Justin Morneau retires? The 6-year contract Morneau signed in 2007 is insured and the Twins will get most of their money back on that investment if he hangs it up. So that's a total of $38 million going back into their Swiss bank account before the 2012 season begins. They sure have not lost too many season ticket holders with almost 90-95% renewing their tickets and 3,000 people in the on deck circle. However, without the front office investing more money into the product, Target Field will be like a ghost town within the next couple years. I sure as heck hope I'm wrong.