According to the Tampa Bay Times, prominent businessman and Tampa Bay Partnership chair Chuck Sykes said Sternberg and Silverman reiterated MLB's growing frustrations with how much money they have to share with the Rays:
Sykes said it was interesting to hear that the Seattle Mariners and Cleveland Indians used to be recipients of revenue-sharing, "then over time, as they worked with their various initiatives and new stadiums, they're now a payer into the system."That was news to our ears, and deMause wrote this morning:
According to Forbes, as of two years ago the Indians were recipients of the biggest revenue-sharing check in baseball; and since then, the team’s attendance has actually gone down. And even if somehow they’ve made a miraculous turnaround since then, it’s hard to see how this can be credited to a stadium that opened in 1994.Those comments came within minutes after I posted my dissection of what seems to be MLB's silly revenue-sharing argument. But at the very least, its comforting to know I'm not the only one who thinks the Rays' campaign to reduce Yankees/Red Sox revenue sharing isn't terribly convincing.
It looks like this is going to be the Rays’ PR strategy, though: Yeah, we’re winning ballgames, and making money, but we’re doing it with the help of this revenue-sharing program that MLB specifically set up to help low-revenue teams win ballgames and make money, and there’s no way they’re going to let that continue. To which the sensible response would be: What, so MLB thinks the Rays wouldn’t be revenue-sharing recipients if it moved them to Charlotte or something? But then, sensible responses aren’t the game that MLB is playing — nor, it would seem, is the Tampa Bay Times.
After all, even if the Rays climbed out of the bottom-10 in revenue, another team would simply take its place and we'd still have the 10 richest teams cutting checks to the 10 poorest teams to preserve some semblance of parity...