Jump to content



Recent headlines from The Baltimore Sun

Photo
- - - - -

Recent O's History: Payroll and More


  • Please log in to reply
18 replies to this topic

#1 Struds

Struds

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,759 posts

Posted 06 February 2014 - 11:05 AM

This is kind of a long read, but it raises many points that have been discussed on this board, and a few that (I think) have not.

 

Excerpts:

 

Once upon a time, the Orioles were the Yankees and Dodgers of the sport. In 1996 and 1998, the O’s spent more on payroll than any other team. Considering how teams earned money back then, it made perfect sense: Attendance was king, and Baltimore led the American League in that category every year from 1995 through 1998, then finished second in 1999 and 2000. The immense appeal of Oriole Park at Camden Yards (which opened in 1992 and became the gold standard for new ballparks) combined with the team’s on-field success (the O’s reached the ALCS in 1996 and ’97) made the team a financial powerhouse.

In 1998, however, the O’s started to falter, going just 79-83. Over the next few years, Baltimore became a cautionary tale for how spending on high-priced talent guaranteed nothing.

- - - - - - -

Andy MacPhail took over as Baltimore’s new GM in June 2007. His main objective in Year 1 was to gauge how much major league talent the Orioles really had. It turned out to be not much, partly because few of their high draft picks panned out. From 1998 through 2001, Baltimore’s first-round and supplemental first-round picks included Rick Elder, Mamon Tucker, Mike Paradis, Richard Stahl, Beau Hale, Tripper Johnson, Chris Smith, and Bryan Bass, not one of whom played in the majors for the O’s. Neither did Wade Townsend, the team’s 2004 first-round pick, who returned to Rice after failing to reach a deal with Baltimore. Thanks in part to those many draft whiffs, the Orioles posted their 10th consecutive losing season in 2007, going 69-93.

MacPhail began making aggressive moves after that one-year grace period, including deals that built the foundation for the 2012 team that finally ended Baltimore’s postseason drought. The highlight was a six-player deal that sent Erik Bedard to Seattle for a package headed by Adam Jones, Chris Tillman, and then–ace reliever George Sherrill. That trade went down as one of the best star-for-prospects deals of the decade: Bedard was never the same after his big 2007 season in Baltimore, while Jones and Tillman have become centerpieces for the O’s. In defending Angelos during our conversation, MacPhail said he had to sell the owner far more on trading away an established star like Bedard than he ever did on acquiring high-priced veteran help. He said Angelos’s guiding principle, far more than with most owners, is deliberation.3

 

- - - - - - -

When I interviewed Duquette a year ago, he said he expected the team to improve in 2013, with the same core players in place and several younger players, including phenom Manny Machado, likely to get better and contribute more in everyday roles. Here’s what Duquette said when I asked him about the team’s seeming aversion to making a big-money winter move:

The players we have on the roster, a lot of them were on one-year deals. So we have an increase in our payroll from players who performed well. Thirteen of them were in the arbitration process, so we went from about $82 million last year to over $90 million this year. By virtue of their performance, they absorbed additional resources. That’s the way it should be; if you perform well, you should be rewarded. We looked around for a top starting pitcher and a middle-of-the-lineup hitter. But the cost of a top starting pitcher we thought was too prohibitive in terms of what we’d have to give up in a trade. We feel good about what we have. We have a strong middle of the lineup with Jones, Davis, and Wieters. With Markakis and [Nate] McLouth we have good table-setters. Maybe Machado will continue to improve. We’re hoping [Nolan] Reimold comes back and plays well. Maybe some of those young pitchers will improve this year … Hopefully our young guys will continue to develop. A little more patience at the plate would help us offensively.

 

http://grantland.com...ending-al-east/

 



#2 weird-O

weird-O

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 13,316 posts
  • LocationI'm here from downtown, I'm here from Mitch and Murray.

Posted 06 February 2014 - 11:50 AM

deliberation is right. PGA is known, around the sport, for his agonizingly slow decision making. baseball isn't a law firm or a court proceeding, where everyone sits in wait while lawyers, judges and juries take their sweet time pouring over the information. that's why owners hire GMs to do the work for them. as an owner, it's your job to hire a good GM. then it's his job to run, develop and improve the team. the owner's role is to step aside and let the professionals do the job you hired them to do. that's not how PGA operates, because he's always convinced that he is the smartest man in the room. hence, he signs Albert Bell on his own, then barged in on Frank Wren's meeting to announce that they had a new player.

 

I'll leave it at that and spare everyone from reading the litany of complaints I have about ownership. :P     


"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics." - Benjamin Disraeli

#3 bmore_ken

bmore_ken

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 55,057 posts

Posted 06 February 2014 - 11:51 AM

But the cost of a top starting pitcher we thought was too prohibitive in terms of what we’d have to give up in a trade.

 

and there's your problem


Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. It has a nice sound to it

Suggs has signed. I've never been so happy to be wrong

Don't blame me, I voted Bob Barr:cool:

#4 weird-O

weird-O

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 13,316 posts
  • LocationI'm here from downtown, I'm here from Mitch and Murray.

Posted 06 February 2014 - 12:04 PM

and there's your problem

in and of it'self, that part doesn't offend me. the problem is, not only do they not want to trade for a top of the rotation starter, they don't want to buy one either. if they were the Braves or Cardinals, that's not a problem. but when you won't trade for, or sign, a #1, you damn sure better grow one. and that hasn't happened since Mussina.  


"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics." - Benjamin Disraeli

#5 weenie

weenie

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 924 posts

Posted 06 February 2014 - 04:34 PM

Of late, what I find curious is how low profile PA has been.  Now in his mid-eighties, the ego is surely still intact but the mind and body are rumored to be failing.  DDs latest obstacle may be a dementia ridden owner with narcissistic sons.  Though my thoughts may be embellished, I wonder if maybe we underestimate DD's challenges.  In particular, who changes Pete's diaper now that his office is where Dan's used to be?



#6 weird-O

weird-O

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 13,316 posts
  • LocationI'm here from downtown, I'm here from Mitch and Murray.

Posted 06 February 2014 - 07:15 PM

Of late, what I find curious is how low profile PA has been.  Now in his mid-eighties, the ego is surely still intact but the mind and body are rumored to be failing.  DDs latest obstacle may be a dementia ridden owner with narcissistic sons.  Though my thoughts may be embellished, I wonder if maybe we underestimate DD's challenges.  In particular, who changes Pete's diaper now that his office is where Dan's used to be?

I haven't heard anything about PGA's health, but I couldn't find anything positive to take from his decision to move back into the warehouse.


"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics." - Benjamin Disraeli

#7 Far from home

Far from home

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 15,735 posts

Posted 06 February 2014 - 11:21 PM

I want to thank the national media for this level criticism. It is needed, even though it won't make a difference. I just wish there was a truly hard-hitting way to punish an owner for mismanagement.
Ideological gravy trains lead to poor decisions.
Learn from the last President, and make this next era one of rebuilding what has been torn down.
Instead of being loyal to your party, be loyal to your country and your people.

#8 Slidemaster

Slidemaster

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 18,469 posts

Posted 07 February 2014 - 03:27 AM

http://en.wikipedia....John_P._Angelos

John P. Angelos is the Executive Vice President of the Baltimore Orioles, a position he has held since April 1999, leading the club's front office and overseeing day-to-day business operations.[1] He also serves as President and Chief Operating Officer of the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network (MASN), overseeing the network's business operations. Angelos is the elder son of Baltimore Orioles owner Peter Angelos. He is a graduate of Duke University and received his J.D. from the University of Baltimore School of Law.
I wouldn't be surprised if John is calling all the shots.
The kids are alright.

#9 weenie

weenie

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 924 posts

Posted 07 February 2014 - 07:10 AM

http://en.wikipedia....John_P._Angelos

 

I wouldn't be surprised if John is calling all the shots.

 

That explains a lot.  The Grantland article insinuates a lot of revenue potential is being lost via the MASN deals with local cable networks.  The comparison between Comcast Sports and MASN inferred as much as $50M or more per annum is being left behind by bad cable access and advertising deals.  Like his Dad, John knows not when he knows not and it makes him an easy mark for far more experienced cable rights negotiators.  But there's no accounatbility or perspective when Daddy is the boss and he's no longer with it. 

 

If John was smart, he'd pay an experienced guy a couple million to negotiate fees with Comcast and advertisers and thereafter reap the $25M - $50M he's apparently too inexperienced to procure on his own.   The best leaders know when to bring in resources.  Having a novice as CEO of MASN is very enlightening. 


Edited by weenie, 07 February 2014 - 07:11 AM.


#10 Brohan

Brohan

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 8,618 posts

Posted 07 February 2014 - 07:30 AM

That explains a lot.  The Grantland article insinuates a lot of revenue potential is being lost via the MASN deals with local cable networks.  The comparison between Comcast Sports and MASN inferred as much as $50M or more per annum is being left behind by bad cable access and advertising deals.  Like his Dad, John knows not when he knows not and it makes him an easy mark for far more experienced cable rights negotiators.  But there's no accounatbility or perspective when Daddy is the boss and he's no longer with it. 
 
If John was smart, he'd pay an experienced guy a couple million to negotiate fees with Comcast and advertisers and thereafter reap the $25M - $50M he's apparently too inexperienced to procure on his own.   The best leaders know when to bring in resources.  Having a novice as CEO of MASN is very enlightening.


If John was smart he would have passed the bar and wouldn't be in the warehouse.

The Angelos family dysfunction spills over to management of the team and MASN. They are one backward @$$ mom and pop shop that makes so much money they don't need to be smart.

Most interesting thing about the article was MLB pays the Gnats to shut up about the MASN money.

MASN's content and production is worse than any college, local access channel I've ever seen. Not putting a dime into it saves money, more bottom line for Pittsburgh Pete and what ever son he is on speaking terms with this week.

#11 Brohan

Brohan

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 8,618 posts

Posted 07 February 2014 - 07:32 AM

http://en.wikipedia....John_P._Angelos



I wouldn't be surprised if John is calling all the shots.


He is not calling any shots. He had a falling out with Pete about two years ago and didn't show up for work for months...none of the employees were told where he was or what he was doing. But during his absence a lot of people John hired were fired. Great company eh?

#12 weird-O

weird-O

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 13,316 posts
  • LocationI'm here from downtown, I'm here from Mitch and Murray.

Posted 07 February 2014 - 08:24 AM

http://en.wikipedia....John_P._Angelos

 

I wouldn't be surprised if John is calling all the shots.

 

Louis is the son who is being groomed to take over the team. John isn't connected with the team any longer, that I know of.

 

so far, it looks like Louis is in lock step with his father's philosophy of running the team and MASN. so there's nothing to suggest that things will change when he eventually takes over. 


"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics." - Benjamin Disraeli

#13 Steveg85321

Steveg85321

    Sage of wisdom, reason and truth

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,950 posts

Posted 07 February 2014 - 09:32 AM

I am not disagreeing with any of the above because I don't know the inside scoop. I do have a question though. If the Orioles' front office had, this immediate past off-season, the green light to totally get anyone they wanted (let's assume for the sake of argument that Cano and Tanaka are just out of reach), which free agents should they have signed that would put the team over the top? Also don't include Balfour, just because that is obvious. I'm just wondering if there may be actual baseball talent/value reasons to have stayed out of the free agent market this year. Of course, even if they decided to make a deal, Angelos is so slow on the draw they would have gotten beat out anyway.



#14 weird-O

weird-O

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 13,316 posts
  • LocationI'm here from downtown, I'm here from Mitch and Murray.

Posted 07 February 2014 - 10:40 AM

I am not disagreeing with any of the above because I don't know the inside scoop. I do have a question though. If the Orioles' front office had, this immediate past off-season, the green light to totally get anyone they wanted (let's assume for the sake of argument that Cano and Tanaka are just out of reach), which free agents should they have signed that would put the team over the top? Also don't include Balfour, just because that is obvious. I'm just wondering if there may be actual baseball talent/value reasons to have stayed out of the free agent market this year. Of course, even if they decided to make a deal, Angelos is so slow on the draw they would have gotten beat out anyway.

Do trades count? because Doug Fister would have been a good addition.

 

if you add the caveat that really high end players aren't included, then you've unintentionally built in an excuse not to buy. Cano is old for a 10 year deal. But he would be an amazing addition to the line up that would essentially make it possible to go with a lesser DH type, because they would be getting offensive power/production from a position that isn't typically a power source.

 

As I understand it, Tanaka is a #2, not an ace. and he may struggle in his transition to MLB. NY clearly paid more than they would have liked to. but they did it because they could afford it, they're a team who is good enough to compete, and they were desperate for pitching.

 

the O's can afford Tanaka's price tag, they're a team that is good enough to compete, and they're desperate for pitching.

 

Beltran should have been picked up by the O's. Morales is a good choice for DH. 

 

do a position by position comparison of NY & Baltimore, and the O's match up very well.

 

C - push

1B - advantage O's

2B - advantage NY

3B - advantage O's

SS - push

LF - NY

CF - push

RF - push


"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics." - Benjamin Disraeli

#15 Ravens2006

Ravens2006

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 14,443 posts

Posted 09 February 2014 - 09:47 PM

The biggest shame of it all maybe is the lack of effort they put in to MASN.  I've said it many times before... if you look at:

 

1) market size / population, and

 

2) income levels in that market

 

It's a legitimate argument to say that at MASN / Angelos' disposal is the 4th most lucrative "local" market in the country. 

 

For those that say "The Orioles can't compete with the Yankees and Red Sox financially"... only 1/2 of that is legitimate.  The Orioles own a significant majority in an RSN that calls the nation's 4th largest, and arguably wealthiest, "mega market" its home.  At the VERY LEAST, it's on par with what the Red Sox have at their disposal with NESN (and the Red Sox share a stake in NESN with the Bruins). 

 

They were slow on starting up MASN.  They were slow on modernizing MASN and increasing HD content.  They have almost zero original content.  They've missed out on any excitement in NoVA as the Nationals became competitive.  They couldn't work with the NFL team across their own parking lot, and haven't carried any of the "original content" for a team that in the last 3 years was one catch away from a Superbowl, and then followed that with a Superbowl victory.  At times when they can maximize ad revenue around "hot topic" local teams... they manage to reap virtually ZERO benefits from it.  There are two NFL teams, two MLB teams, a usually competitive NHL team, and an NBA also-ran within a short drive of the MASN studios.  Why they don't have more original / MASN-produced content covering these 6 franchises... along with the local colleges... is mind-boggling and inexplicable.  Other than the obvious answer... it's "safer" to just collect the sure-thing subscriber fees and do nothing, than it is to put some effort in to the whole thing and try to profit more.

 

And now the RSN that was supposed to be the Orioles' "savior"... which COULD be helping pour considerably more funding in to the Orioles coffers... which is what he basically promised back in September 2006... is pouring virtual pennies in to the Orioles bank account.  And because of the terms of the agreement with MLB / the Nationals, Angelos has actually negotiated a situation where spending money on the Orioles (via "rights" deals) causes a 200% increase in MASN expenditures.  So spending money to help the Orioles actually becomes a negative, so THEY ACTUALLY WANT TO SPEND AS LITTLE AS POSSIBLE ON THE ORIOLES' RIGHTS DEAL.

 

Chew on that for a while...


Edited by Ravens2006, 09 February 2014 - 09:50 PM.

"Matt Wieters is sunshine, unicorns, puppy dogs and the baby Jesus all rolled into one"

#16 weird-O

weird-O

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 13,316 posts
  • LocationI'm here from downtown, I'm here from Mitch and Murray.

Posted 10 February 2014 - 09:50 AM

The biggest shame of it all maybe is the lack of effort they put in to MASN.  I've said it many times before... if you look at:

 

1) market size / population, and

 

2) income levels in that market

 

It's a legitimate argument to say that at MASN / Angelos' disposal is the 4th most lucrative "local" market in the country. 

 

For those that say "The Orioles can't compete with the Yankees and Red Sox financially"... only 1/2 of that is legitimate.  The Orioles own a significant majority in an RSN that calls the nation's 4th largest, and arguably wealthiest, "mega market" its home.  At the VERY LEAST, it's on par with what the Red Sox have at their disposal with NESN (and the Red Sox share a stake in NESN with the Bruins). 

 

They were slow on starting up MASN.  They were slow on modernizing MASN and increasing HD content.  They have almost zero original content.  They've missed out on any excitement in NoVA as the Nationals became competitive.  They couldn't work with the NFL team across their own parking lot, and haven't carried any of the "original content" for a team that in the last 3 years was one catch away from a Superbowl, and then followed that with a Superbowl victory.  At times when they can maximize ad revenue around "hot topic" local teams... they manage to reap virtually ZERO benefits from it.  There are two NFL teams, two MLB teams, a usually competitive NHL team, and an NBA also-ran within a short drive of the MASN studios.  Why they don't have more original / MASN-produced content covering these 6 franchises... along with the local colleges... is mind-boggling and inexplicable.  Other than the obvious answer... it's "safer" to just collect the sure-thing subscriber fees and do nothing, than it is to put some effort in to the whole thing and try to profit more.

 

And now the RSN that was supposed to be the Orioles' "savior"... which COULD be helping pour considerably more funding in to the Orioles coffers... which is what he basically promised back in September 2006... is pouring virtual pennies in to the Orioles bank account.  And because of the terms of the agreement with MLB / the Nationals, Angelos has actually negotiated a situation where spending money on the Orioles (via "rights" deals) causes a 200% increase in MASN expenditures.  So spending money to help the Orioles actually becomes a negative, so THEY ACTUALLY WANT TO SPEND AS LITTLE AS POSSIBLE ON THE ORIOLES' RIGHTS DEAL.

 

Chew on that for a while...

I agree with almost everything you mentioned. the one difference of opinion is related to the rights fees for the Nats. when PGA added the clause that the O's & Nats must be paid the same, it was to save him money. he knew, as well as most people, that the fees would increase for the Nats. that clause is a safeguard to protect him from having to spend money he doesn't want to spend. I did a little research, based on recent deals signed by the rangers, indians, etc. If I remember correctly (it's been a year since I looked into it) the Nats could easily get $100M/yr to broadcast their games.  

 

so the idea that the clause is blocking the O's from increased spending is not the case. if the Nats didn't exist, he still would carry a tight payroll.      

 

as for MASN programming, except for a few hours a day, during baseball season, MASN is just another ESPN channel. Like you said, there are so many possibilities. even if PGA didn't want to pay teams to show their games, MASN could create shows dedicated to the local teams. the best they've given us is sycophantic Tom Davis guzzling the kool-aid and spewing it back out to us. 


"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics." - Benjamin Disraeli

#17 CROUSEMAN

CROUSEMAN

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 981 posts

Posted 11 February 2014 - 08:15 AM

Do trades count? because Doug Fister would have been a good addition.

 

if you add the caveat that really high end players aren't included, then you've unintentionally built in an excuse not to buy. Cano is old for a 10 year deal. But he would be an amazing addition to the line up that would essentially make it possible to go with a lesser DH type, because they would be getting offensive power/production from a position that isn't typically a power source.

 

As I understand it, Tanaka is a #2, not an ace. and he may struggle in his transition to MLB. NY clearly paid more than they would have liked to. but they did it because they could afford it, they're a team who is good enough to compete, and they were desperate for pitching.

 

the O's can afford Tanaka's price tag, they're a team that is good enough to compete, and they're desperate for pitching.

 

Beltran should have been picked up by the O's. Morales is a good choice for DH. 

 

do a position by position comparison of NY & Baltimore, and the O's match up very well.

 

C - push

1B - advantage O's

2B - advantage NY

3B - advantage O's

SS - push

LF - NY

CF - push

RF - push

The Fister deal is the one that has bugged me the most this off-season.  Dumpster Dan really blew it not getting in on this one.  Here you have a Number 2 starter to pair with Tillman at the top of the rotation that was at a reasonable cost.  I think Fister has 2ys/18million left on his deal which is way below market for his numbers. And the Tigers didn't get that much back from the Nats.  A solid utility infielder, a left handed set up man and the No. 7 prospect.  Geez we could of offered some kind of package of Flaherty, Patton, matusz, Wright or Berry (Pick 3).  And if the Tigers liked JJ at all as a closer he could of been folded into the deal instead of the Tigers spending 2/20 on Nathan.  I really don't get it.  It had to be payroll related.  O's want to keep the payroll below 90 and they had to see how arbitration was going top play out and if they could dump JJ.  Dan is full of it when he says payroll could be 100 million. This team is a joke.



#18 weird-O

weird-O

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 13,316 posts
  • LocationI'm here from downtown, I'm here from Mitch and Murray.

Posted 11 February 2014 - 10:30 AM

The Fister deal is the one that has bugged me the most this off-season.  Dumpster Dan really blew it not getting in on this one.  Here you have a Number 2 starter to pair with Tillman at the top of the rotation that was at a reasonable cost.  I think Fister has 2ys/18million left on his deal which is way below market for his numbers. And the Tigers didn't get that much back from the Nats.  A solid utility infielder, a left handed set up man and the No. 7 prospect.  Geez we could of offered some kind of package of Flaherty, Patton, matusz, Wright or Berry (Pick 3).  And if the Tigers liked JJ at all as a closer he could of been folded into the deal instead of the Tigers spending 2/20 on Nathan.  I really don't get it.  It had to be payroll related.  O's want to keep the payroll below 90 and they had to see how arbitration was going top play out and if they could dump JJ.  Dan is full of it when he says payroll could be 100 million. This team is a joke.

all true. the tigers have been desperate for a closer. the O's had one that they didn't want to pay. 

 

as for the deal to the Nats, I've heard that the tigers got a high ceiling pitching prospect in Ray. but he's in the low minors, so no one really knows about him. still, the O's could have matched that deal, no problem. but it would have meant taking on payroll.

 

no one is being fooled anymore. we all know what time it is. 


"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics." - Benjamin Disraeli

#19 StevenJB

StevenJB

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,961 posts

Posted 12 February 2014 - 02:47 PM

"When the Lerner family bought the Nationals in 2006, it was saddled with this lemon of a deal, in which neither it nor the team’s first president, Stan Kasten, had any say. The terms stipulated that the deal could be renegotiated after five full seasons, and the Nats took their first opportunity to challenge the terms after the 2011 season. When that challenge dragged into 2012, those terms looked even more unfair. After spending years rebuilding a franchise that had been decimated by penny-pinching and mismanagement in Montreal, the Nats finally made the playoffs for the first time, winning 98 games and the NL East title. That same year, the Orioles made the postseason for the first time in 15 seasons. MASN viewership skyrocketed, enhancing the network’s already rising economic profile, but the Nats saw just a fraction of the returns.

 

"Since the Nationals couldn’t contest the equity element of the deal, they tried for higher rights fees, asking for $100 million a year. The Orioles countered with a 20 percent raise, to about $35 million. There’s no hope in hell of an easy compromise when the two sides are that far apart, and the Orioles have good reason to dig in their heels. Remember that while RSN rights fees are subject to revenue sharing, the money left after those rights fees have been paid out is not. Remember, too, that the O’s and Nats must make the same amount in rights fees every year. So if Washington succeeded in getting $100 million a year in rights fees, Baltimore would have to pay itself $100 million a year, too. That would force the Orioles to pay the 34 percent revenue-sharing tax on $100 million instead of on the current $29 million. It would also leave MASN broke.

 

"One potential resolution would be for the Nationals to acquire a big enough chunk of MASN from the Orioles to make the teams 50-50 partners. A 2013 Bloomberg report pegged MASN’s market value at $492 million, so the Nats would need to pay the Orioles slightly more than $167 million to acquire the 34 percent needed to get to 50-50. Other rumors have circulated. A committee of representatives from the Rays, Mets, and Pirates is brainstorming ways to resolve the MASN dispute, and if MLB eventually forces the Orioles to pay out considerably more in rights fees without receiving any financial consideration in return, it would significantly affect the team’s finances. While Angelos and his representatives on Baltimore’s business side declined to comment for this story, that would be the most logical defense to offer critics who say the team is raking in MASN cash but refusing to increase payroll.

 

“That’s the other side,” said Tella. “That [Angelos] has been cautious with his approach to the team, not knowing what could happen given the massive shift that could go against him.”  For now, the MASN status quo remains. The Nationals aren’t completely helpless, though: According to a source close to the Washington franchise, MLB has sent the team an undisclosed sum every year to help bridge the gap, and to prevent the Lerners from taking matters to court, until the deal becomes more balanced."

 

http://grantland.com...ending-al-east/

 

The terms of the MASN deal were that the deal could be renegotiated after five full seasons, and the Nats took their first opportunity to challenge the terms after the 2011 season.  The Nats requested $100M.  They were receiving $29M.  Angelos refused the $100M and countered with $34M.  The Nats requested that the three team arbitration panel made up the Rays, Mets, and Pirates owners review the deal.  No one outside of MLB knows how much they decided.  Their decision or recommendation was given to Bud Selig and kept from the media.  For arguments sake, let's say that the panel recommended that $75M be paid to the Nats by MASN.  That's a difference of $46M per season over the past three seasons, 2011, 2012, and 2013, for a total of $138M cumulative in arrears.  We do know that MLB is paying the Nats an undisclosed sum annually to keep Lerner out of court who could sue MLB and MASN for failing to fairly compensate him for the true market value of his TV rights.  Lerner has several things going for him in court.  All Lerner has to do is point out how much teams are being paid for their RSN deals.  The Phillies just agreed with Comcast for $100M annyally.  Not only that but the findings of the three team arbitration panel are binding.  Angelos must pay up.  I do know that the original terms of the MASN deal called for binding arbitration by the three team panel if an amount could not be agreed upon.  If the Rays/Pirates/Mets recommended $75M annually then Angelos is stuck by the very terms of the deal that he originally accepted.  MASN now owes the Nats $138M and the Orioles $138M.  MASN is contractually obligated to pay each team exactly the same amount annually.  If MLB has given Lerner $138M then MASN nows owes MLB $138M.  That money has come out of the pockets of the other owners and eventually MASN must make restitution to MLB.  The meter is running, so to speak.  Now you can undersatnd why Angelos cannot increase his payroll or simply will not.  If MASN is forced to pay the Orioles $46M more per year then Angelos has no valid excuse why he does not raise the team's payroll. What is also true is that an additional $92M total being paid to the Nats and the Orioles annually would probably bankrupt MASN.  Angelos is being caught in a cash squeeze by his own making.  He demanded these terms from MLB in 2005 but did not ever figure that the TV rights of the Nats would increase potentially so quickly and so drastically.  Angelos can no longer afford his own RSN!  My guess is that this situation will and must be decided by MLB in Lerner's favor.  Lerner will be given 50% of MASN's equity out of Angelos's own pocket.  Remember that if MLB eventually forces the Orioles to pay out considerably more in rights fees without receiving any financial consideration in return, it would significantly affect the team’s finances.  Angelos and MASN owes back to MLB whatever MLB is now paying to Lerner.  That MASN debt to MLB will be used by MLB to apply to a purchase of enough equity of MASN to make Lerner and Angelos equal 50-50 partners immediately.  Angelos, in effect, will pay for Lerner's increased equity out of MASN's own pocket.  Angelos cannot go to court because he agreed to the provisions of the MASN deal which commited him to binding arbitration by the three team panel of arbitrators.  Angelos would have no other choice but to sell his RSN or lose it.  If the arbitrators publicly rule in favor of Lerner at Selig's direction, then MASN must pay all arrears to the Nats as well as the Orioles.  That could total as much as $92M x 3 years (2011, 2012, 2013) or $276M.  MASN would go bankrupt immediately!  That is why Angelos has no choice.  He must give the Nats and Lerner an equal say in RSN management decisions or lose his RSN!  The situation will continue to worsen for Angelos if he does not agree to this deal.  After the 2015 season, another review must be done on the amount of compensation being paid to Lerner.  What if the arbitrators raise the amount to $100M to $125M for each the Nats and the Orioles?  Angelos and MASN would be dead in the water!  Making Lerner and Angelos dead equal partners should eliminate the acrimony.  All profits would be split down the middle for both teams.  Again, Angelos has no choice other than to sell his RSN or to lose it.

 

Personally, I would like to see the Nats get their own RSN but that would harm the Orioles.  Angelos admitted in 2005 that Baltimore is not a big enough market to sustain itself without piggybacking on top of Washington.  Angelos admitted that the Orioles are not situated in a market by itself that could sustain an Orioles-only RSN.  Rather than harm the Orioles (which does not benefit the Nationals), I would be okay with a 50-50 partnership that would benefit both markets and their fans.  Orioles tickets would be sold at Nationals Park and Nats tickets would be sold at OP@CY.  Joint marketing would be done by both teams and possibly a joint fanfest could be held in Howard County.  Both teams could even do something that was radical with the permission of MLB.  How about a Orioles game with an AL opponent to be held at Nationals Park?  How about a Nationals game with an NL opponent at OP@CY?  Angelos has made both teams and many of their fans enemies of each other.  It doesn't have to be that way.  The fans of each team and city could learn to respect each others teams if Angelos would stop with his hatred of Washington baseball.


Edited by StevenJB, 12 February 2014 - 03:35 PM.





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users