Two days ago, Forbes released their yearly financial report on baseball's most valuable teams. As always, the results are pretty intuitive: large market teams like the Yankees, Red Sox, Cubs, and Phillies are all at the top of the list, while small market teams such as the Rays, Pirates, and Royals fill out the bottom.
The gap between rich and poor teams becomes blatantly obvious with these rankings, as the large market teams can be worth as much as two to three times as much as the smaller market teams. And then there's the Yankees, who are simply operating in an entirely different stratosphere; their current value ($1.7 billion) is nearly twice as much as the next closest club (the Red Sox, $912 million), and their yearly revenue is well over double what teams like the Rays are pulling in. Sometimes, it really doesn't seem like they're playing the same game as the rest of the league.
There's some good news in this year's report about the Rays, as Forbes has their franchise value increasing by 5% from last season. Overall, the Rays have had their franchise value increase 88% since the new ownership took over (h/t Dock of the Rays), while their revenue streams have increased by around 50% over the same time period. While I'm sure the Rays would like those numbers to be larger, those are still overall encouraging trends. For people that claim the Rays are in danger of being contracted, these numbers should help alleviate those concerns.
Full chart after the jump.
Of course, these numbers should be taken with a grain of salt. Forbes does not have any special access to the books of major league baseball teams, and so these figures are likely not 100% accurate (especially the revenue and operating income categories). At the same time, they're good references and considering how hard major league baseball teams deny these figures are accurate, you've got to figure they hit somewhat close to home.
|Rank||Team||Current Value ($ mil)||1-year Value Change (%)||Debt/Value (%)||Revenue ($ mil)||Operating Income ($ mil)|
|1||New York Yankees||1,700||6||4||427||25.7|
|2||Boston Red Sox||912||5||26||272||-1.1|
|3||Los Angeles Dodgers||800||10||54||246||32.8|
|5||New York Mets||747||-13||60||233||-6.2|
|7||San Francisco Giants||563||16||21||230||29.9|
|9||LA Angels of Anaheim||554||6||10||222||11.8|
|10||Chicago White Sox||526||13||8||210||27.6|
|11||St. Louis Cardinals||518||6||53||207||19.8|
|19||San Diego Padres||406||0||49||159||37.2|
|26||Kansas City Royals||351||3||14||160||10.3|
|27||Toronto Blue Jays||337||3||0||168||3.6|
|28||Tampa Bay Rays||331||5||35||166||6.8|