Ahead of Game 1 of the World Series tonight in Boston, a new financial ranking of Major League Baseball teams has been released.
It has nothing to do with on-field ability, just money. And the numbers are much higher than ever...
Bloomberg Billionaires has uncovered new data that finds 10 MLB teams are worth more than $1 billion. And the Yankees are worth $3.3 billion, according to total value. These numbers are 35% higher than previous rankings by Forbes.
Matt Miller, editor of Bloomberg Billionaires, says the $2 billion Los Angeles Dodgers sale this year changed everything because it "really showed that you have to value all of the assets when it comes to the teams, you can't just do revenue from ticket sales, concessions and stadium-type deals and merchandising. Really the driver of this is regional sports networks."
That brings us to the YES Network - the most profitable regional cable channel in the U.S., according to SNL Kagan. That's why the Yankees are far and away the most valuable franchise in the league.
"As long as you have those cable subscribers paying in, it's a good long-term revenue stream," says Miller.
That revenue stream -- the vast media opportunities available to teams that own their own cable networks -- has boosted their overall value. And that's a stream that the Forbes lists have passed over because, in their words, "teams and regional sports networks can be sold separately."
Miller and Bloomberg argue that you have to include all the assets to get to a true measure of worth.
See below for an abbreviated list of the most and least valuable baseball teams. This year's World Series features the 3rd most valuable team (Red Sox) versus the 15th most valuable (Cardinals).
Top 10 MLB Teams (Total Value):
1 New York Yankees $3.3 Billion
2 Los Angeles Dodgers $2.1 Billion
3 Boston Red Sox $2.1 Billion
4 New York Mets $2.1 Billion
5 Chicago Cubs $1.3 Billion
6 San Francisco Giants $1.2 Billion
7 Baltimore Orioles $1.1 Billion
8 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim $1.1 Billion
9 Philadelphia Phillies $1 Billion
10 Texas Rangers $1 Billion
Bottom Six MLB Teams (Total Value):
25 Miami Marlins $595 Million
26 Oakland Athletics $590 Million
27 Colorado Rockies $580 Million
28 Cleveland Indians $575 Million
29 Kansas City Royals $540 Million
30 Tampa Bay Rays $530 Million