Wednesday, November 28, 2007

There was an article on today about how the Yankees are looking to trade for Johan Santana. Rumor has it that he's looking for a new deal in the $25 million per year range. Not many teams could even begin to think about signing him to a deal like that, but the Yankees are certainly one of those teams.

This, once again, leads to my question of when is MLB going to beat down the union and install a salary cap? Is it going to be when the Marlins have a $25 million payroll and the Yankees have a $500 million payroll? It should only be a few more years before that happens. If the Yankees do get Santana and pay him his $25 million, then they'll have a 25 man roster that costs more than $250 million per year. That's a ridiculous AVERAGE of $10 million per year per player.

I don't care that the Yankees haven't been able to buy a World Series lately. Regardless of what you believe, the fact is that eventually this disparity will kill the game.

In 2007 there were 64 players in MLB that had salaries of $10 million or more. 11 of those played for the Yankees. Now consider than the Yankees also had 9 players making less than $1 million per year. Imagine what will happen to their payroll when they begin replacing some of those low priced players with high priced players.

I say it every year, and I'll say it again. One of the main reasons that the NFL succeeds is because of their salary parity and the non-guaranteed contracts that they have. All of the teams are on equal footing, which is why teams come from nowhere to compete. That's unheard of in MLB. You're not going to see the Devil Rays lose 100 games for 5 years in a row and then win 100 games the next year. It just doesn't happen. Well it does happen in the NFL. The Browns have been a doormat for 5 years and if the season ended today, they'd be in the playoffs.

I understand that the executives in charge of MLB love having the Yankees as the big gorilla at the top. It helps attendance, etc. What it doesn't help is parity.

Here's a wild solution that stands absolutely zero chance of happening.

1. Install a salary cap in baseball.
2. Allow each team to designate 3 keepers (players that will stay on its roster.)
3. Throw all of the rest of the players in the Major Leagues into a draft.
4. Have each team do a re-draft of players while sticking to the salary cap.

You'd end up with salary parity and a real feeling that anyone could win. Yes, I know it would never happen, but imagine the excitement that people in Kansas City, Pittsburgh, and Tampa Bay would feel.


boilerdowd said...

If only I knew of a sports blog site you could post such thoughts...

Tim said...

If you only had posted a useful comment instead of pimping BS...

J Money said...

You are certifiably insane. Yeah, wouldn't it be great to re-draft all the players in MLB? Uh, no, not really. Then you'd lose a damn fair number of your quality players from the Indians.

I don't even know where to begin with your argument... but I will be sure to point out that "parity" and the salary cap aren't why the NFL is so immensely popular. The NFL is immensely popular because there are so few games and each one is critical for a team -- oh, and gambling. GAMBLING is what makes the NFL so popular. Not the salary cap. If it was the salary cap, then the NBA and NHL would be just as popular.

I agree there's a disparity -- BUT, the Yankees (and Mets and Sox and others) have their own regional sports networks that rake in millions.... should all that go into Steinbrenner's pocket? Would that make you happy? More revenue sharing? Okay, that's fine... but a cap would mean the Yankees (and Mets and Dodgers and Angels and White Sox and Red Sox and a bunch of other high-spending teams you always forget exist) would be limited to a certain amount and the rest of the money would go... where? Again, into Steinbrenner pockets. Fine, I guess, those are the spoils of owning a team. But it just doesn't seem like as simple a solution as you claim.

Oh, and the Indians went farther than the Yankees this year. And the Rockies made the World Series from the NL. Last year, the Tigers and Cards were there. The Astros were in in 2005. The Marlins in 2003. It happens, man. Despite what you want to believe, there actually is parity in baseball. Just because the KC Royals exist doesn't give them the god-given right to BE in the World Series. Same for the Devil Rays. They're poorly run teams. I don't think you can argue that. Maybe we should force Brian Cashman and Theo Epstein to run those two teams and put their front offices in charge of the Yanks and Sox. That'd be fun.

Tim said...

I'm aware that it's a crazy idea, but I also think it would be pretty cool.

Yes the Indians would lose a lot of players. It would just be cool though.

There's a problem with your idea that some teams are just poorly run and their finances have no impact. Take Oakland. I don't think they're poorly run, but every year they're trading away their talent because they can't afford to keep them. That's a big problem.

boilerdowd said...

Weird...I didn't mention another site, but you jumped to conclusions. Guilty conscience.

Another thing, hope this is "useful" enough for you. You are a baseball socialist. It's ridiculous to punish organizations who have built teams by forcing them to get rid of the majority of their players.

I'm for a salary cap, but VERY against the idea of rewarding crappy organizations with better talent because the field needs to be leveled.

Tim said...

You guys keep talking about crappy organizations. Don't you think those crappy organizations would be better if they had been able to keep their players?

Wouldn't Kansas City be better if it still had Carlos Beltran?

Wouldn't the Indians be better if they still had Manny Ramirez?

Not being able to afford to keep your players doesn't make you a poorly run organization. It just makes you poor. In this case the rich do get richer and the poor do get poorer.