04-10-2012, 11:48 AM #81
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Regarding the original question, I think it will probably take another season like last year before Gardy is on the hot seat and maybe another bad season next year before the Twins decide to do anything. This organization is loyal and is reluctant to make big changes, I think that is mostly good but there is a point when someone high up in the organization recognizes that changes are needed.
It is amazing how many areas fans are really frustrated with regarding the organization: manager, hitting coach, pitching coach, organizational philosophy on hitting and pitching, etc. Not saying fans are completely right but there are enough issues popping up that at least the team needs to reevaluate itself.
04-10-2012, 12:36 PM #82
Understanding Market sizes and demographics is what I kinda do for a living. You are correct that there are certain baseball markets that are penned in geographically and the Twins can roam free to the North and West for many miles.
You do realize that the states you list as having multiple teams also have the 4 highest state popluations. 37 Million in CA... 24 Million in TX. NY and FL are 19 million. That's why those states have multiple teams. Detroit does get a piece of Toledo a fairly nice sized city but there is a bunch of population in the state of Michigan. Grand Rapids, Lansing, Kalamazoo, Saginaw. They don't need to branch out into Ohio to provide Television viewership.
In the Twins case... However, the population totals and hence the value of your TV contract in our additional markets are small #250+ Ranked TV markets like St. Cloud and Fargo and Grand Forks and unranked small communities. They do not add up to what other baseball teams get from markets like San Antonio, Austin, New Orleans, Memphis, Charlotte, Portland, Sacremento, Colorado Springs, Indianapolis, Columbus, Grand Rapids, Buffalo, Orlando, Tucson, Omaha, and Hartford and all of the Fosston sized town's that are also in the area of those bonus areas.
Here's a Wikipedia Map of the blackout areas. It shows how the entire country is carved up for Television Rights and gives you a pretty good idea how the Twins are cornered into primarily low population areas.
The Twins don't even get Rapid City and Duluth to themselves because they have to share them with the Rockies and Brewers.
Getting a change to this map would be near impossible because the owners will never let a population base go to another club because that effects the amount of money they get in their television negotiations.
Television revenue is only part of the revenue stream for Baseball teams. Target field has been great for the Twins and it does provide additional revenue that can be added to the Television Money and Attendence Figures and everything else.
As JB_Iowa pointed out. 29 Million in TV Revenue for the Twins compared to 80 Million for the Rangers is a 51 Million dollar desparity. The stadium is great for revenue but it doesn't remove our small market status. The only thing that will change that is a major population boom in Bemidji.
One thing that would help is if the Twins could get Iowa to themselves. It would be nice to have our AAA team in Des Moines instead of the Cubs to help build that fan base and the games on daily but the Cubs are probably going nowhere and the teams will not willingly walk away from a larger market.
Can the Twins spend more... Probably but for Owners to do that. There has to be some bang for the buck. The Twins lost 99 games last year.
If a strong core of players dot the roster and the team is a few pieces away... The Checkbook will come out again. At least I hope so.
04-10-2012, 03:48 PM #83
@Riverbrian - I will defer to your expertise in market demographics. My goal was not to be a troll or prove necessarily that the Twins are a "small market", "mid-sized market" or whatever. I don't think it matters. As JB_Iowa pointed out, there are so many other factors that determine cash flow, and when you get to the question of the ballclub's budget, ticket revenue and the personal wealth of the owners (and willingness to risk a loss on the product) are much more important factors than sheer availability of people that could potentially watch games on TV, buy merchandise, or pay for tickets.
My point was more to the effect that it doesn't matter. The Twins would not have cut $12 to $15 million off their budget if (a) they had performed significantly better than a 99-loss season; and (b) if spending the additional money would have made any significant difference in their 2012 outcome. All I am saying is that to the extent people assume that the extra money necessarily would have made this team better, and that's not the case. The 2007 Tigers went from an 88-win team to an 88-loss team in 2008 by INCREASING their payroll from $95 million to $137 million in one offseason. In any event, I think we arguing the same thing on that point...
04-10-2012, 06:09 PM #84
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Interesting stuff in the last couple posts. I wonder what the total population is in those blackout areas. I have also thought about how having minor league teams within that area might certainly help that as well. Furthermore, that is atrocious that the Brewers invade Minnesota like that.
04-10-2012, 06:55 PM #85
Which led to your post and then my post. There are many factors that determine a clubs cashflow and to a point it doesn't matter but in the end... In my opinion... Small Market teams can never truly catch up.
We have a new stadium... That gives us a nice revenue stream and it helped even the playing field a bit. Soon... Everyone will have one... Corporate Boxes... Amusement Parks... Upscale and Lowscale dining... Hotels attached... Parking revenue... The possibilities are endless... Some are happening and some will be happening in the future... If something brings in money to an organization... Everyone will want it and copy it.
When everyone gets their parks and maxes out the money streams... The money revenue difference in teams will be back to... Market Size... How much money you get in your TV contract which will be based on the population of your TV market. Right now we get 29 million and the Angels get 160 Million. That's a large difference.
My point is that the Twins are still a small market team. No matter how much they spend or how much revenue the stadium brings in.
04-10-2012, 07:13 PM #86
I don't have any info to direct you to on the total population of the total population areas. However, some night... When you have nothing to do... You can do it by state and get a pretty idea... North Dakota plus South Dakota Plus Minnesota Equals...
This whole thing is why the Giants were not allowing Oakland to move to San Jose... This was the reason that the Orioles were against the Expo's moving to Washington. For anything like that to happen... Someone has to be compensated for the lost revenue. MLB had to basically tell the Orioles owner... Tough *&*&... Here's some money now shut up... Something like that will happen with the Giants as well.
This whole thing is why I doubt expansion will most likely not happen. The Owner will not be able to get out of each other's way.
When it comes to Des Moines... I'm not saying having a AAA club in Iowa would help turn Iowa into Twins Territory but it certainly wouldn't hurt if Sano had to spend a year in Des Moines playing AAA and Iowa Sano and Rosario and Hicks fans can get to know him and follow him forward. It would certainly help bring down travel costs a little but that isn't a huge factor.
The Key is to own the Television in Iowa. That way the next generation of Iowa baseball Fans are exposed to the Twins and the Twins only. Small chance of that happening sadly. Iowa is carved up between the Cubs, White Sox, Royals, Twins, Brewers and Cards. If it did. The Twins market size and Television revenue would almost double.
It's also why I doubted Carl Pohlad when he threatened to move the team to North Carolina before moving on to the contraction threat.
04-10-2012, 07:23 PM #87
Here's a solution...
Talk the Pirates into moving their AAA team to Rochester. It's closer then Indianapolis and maybe that will help them expand into Western New York.
Talk the Cubs into moving their AAA team to Indianapolis. Indiana like Iowa is designated Cubs territory.
Then move the AAA Twins to Des Moines.
The only problem with that scenerio is getting everyone to say... OK... This Riverbrian knows what he's talking about... That never happens. ;-)
04-10-2012, 08:15 PM #88
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If only Garza and Bartlett were still here we would have as close as an ace as we will ever get and a decent SS. Just wait until the month is over and hope it takes 2 hands to count the amount of wins the club has.
04-11-2012, 10:36 AM #89
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Souhan suggested in the strib today that the Pohlad sons might not be as loyal as Carl was. "While I don't believe Terry Ryan would fire manager Ron Gardenhire, it would be foolish to think that the new Pohlads will be patient with the field staff if the losing continues. And what if this team implodes and Ryan refuses a Pohlad command to fire Gardenhire? Would Ryan suddenly remember the "interim" adjective in front of his title?"
While I don't think Gardy should be fired, it may be more of a possibility than I thought.
04-11-2012, 10:51 AM #90
Wow, I know the Strib's comments tend to run negative, but so far there isn't one comment disagreeing with Souhan's premise and the state of the Twins. A lot of, I think deserved, anger towards the Pohlads for cutting payroll this year there too. Like I've posted before if you cut payroll because of poor performance, it almost becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. You'll always do worse and you'll always be cutting payroll. On a positive note, Baseball Prospectus shows the Twins still have a 1.1% chance of making the playoffs this year. To quote Jim Carey: "You mean there's a chance?!?!?"