The COVID-19 pandemic triggered a battle that few expected between MLB team owners and players over how to kick off the season. At first, it was thought that the issue of health and safety would be the most important issue to work on, but that issue was quickly relegated for money.
How much will players earn? How much will the owners lose?
Meanwhile, players have remained strong in wanting them to be paid 100 percent of their per-game salary despite the owners wanting to drop it to 50 percent. Even using techniques to divide the players so they can get what they want.
But, the players have stayed together and that is why the owners seem to be using a new technique, to become the victims. There are already two owners who have said that baseball is an "unprofitable" business and that they do not earn as much as you would think. They were the owners of the Cardinals and Cubs who threw the first stone.
Coming from millionaires, who are dedicated to investing, both they and other owners, it seems very unusual for that type of person to say they do it for "love of the art".
But, well, let's unravel the MLB economy a bit.
Not long ago, MLB was valued at $ 10 billion, one of the most expensive sports leagues in the world, and not more than a decade ago is that the majors were worth $ 2 billion.
The increase has been incredible and while baseball has become one of the largest businesses on the planet and its wages have not increased as much since the valuation of 2 billion, seems like they are desperately trying to keep the cat in the bag.
Even wages are declining. So teams are spending less and earning more.
Just think about it, two of the MLB's "skinniest" franchises, Marlins and Reales, were sold for billions of dollars when they were bought for even less than $ 100 million. For example, the Royals were bought by David Glass for $ 96 million in 2000. Just 20 years later, Glass sold the team for a billion dollars.
Yeah, not profitable. Right...
On the other hand, Marlins, one of the least hobby teams in the entire MLB, was sold for a total of $ 1.2 billion to a group led by Derek Jeter. Former owner Jeffrey Loria took just over a trillion dollars as he bought the South Beach team for $ 186 million in 2002.
Baseball is not profitable... Actually, it's one of the most profitable in the world and these examples are not of any of the biggest teams in the sport like Yankees or Dodgers.
When the owners started this dance of money, they indicated that they would lose more than $ 300 million per game, but when the players asked to show their ledgers to validate these numbers the requests fell on deaf ears.
Since March the players asked for these accounting papers, it is June and they still do not receive anything and will never receive them.
It's easy to come to the fact that MLB owners are somehow moving the numbers around so that everything falls in their favor. As Paul Beeston, a Blue Jays executive famously put it:
"I can turn a $ 4 million profit into a $ 2 million loss and get all the national accounting firms to agree with me."
If I want to leave you with this column, it is the following: MLB owners are one of the smartest people to make money in the world. If baseball was a bad deal, they wouldn't get into it from the start but there you see them fighting to be in the diamond game. Even joining forces, millions, to buy a team.