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Thread: Small Market

  1. #31
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    This just shows how the economics of baseball has changed so radically. It use to be that being a "small market" club didn't really mean anything as far as winning or being competitive.

    But that is before money and greed became the deciding factor in every decision made. That was before free agency and the ascent of the power/influence of the player's union.

    But I don't think the term "small market" should be used as an excuse or crutch. And that seems how this organization wants to use it. It is almost a "defeatist" attitude sometimes.

    Being a designated a small market club may mean you can't go after the high-priced FA's; but it's no excuse for not being able to scout and develop your farm system.

    And if we are going to use the small market excuse or approach, then why are we then signing players like a Jr (or whoever. Just using him as an example) if its going to greatly hinder your spending/investment in other areas?

    When you think small, then you are small.
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  3. #32
    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Quote Originally Posted by GAC
    This just shows how the economics of baseball has changed so radically. It use to be that being a "small market" club didn't really mean anything as far as winning or being competitive.
    The early Cubs and White sox and then Yankees and Giants and later the Dodgers are proof that that statment isn't a whole truth. Shoot, look at the little success of the small market Browns and the small market Senators over the years. The Phillies were 2nd tier in their own city thus making them "small market" and they stunk for most of their existence.

    Big city towns having been buying it since Kelly went from the White Stockings to the Beaneaters for 10K. The only way you beat the big market is with innovation, thus Branch Rickey, thuse Bob Howsam, thus Sandy Alderson, thus Billy Beane.

  4. #33
    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    I appreciate the kudos thrown my way about my rprevious post. But I guess I didn't do a very good job of getting my point across. My point wasn't that the system is broken and that's the reason our TV contract is so bad. The Reds are always going to make less media money than the Yankees, Mets and Red Sox. Unless they go to an NFL style revenue sharing plan - which I oppose - that won't change. What I was trying to get across was that the Reds should be able to do so much better than 26th in local TV/Radio revenues. As I stated teams like PIT, San Diego, Tampa Bay and Florida all had greater TV/Radio revenues than we did in 2001 and my guess is that they are still ahead of us. Do those teams have a more passionate fanbase than the Reds? I doubt it. I know that FLA is the defending world champs but back in 2001 they were going nowhere in a hurry. TB has always been lousy. S.D. went to the Series in 98 but hasn't done much since and PIT hasn't been any good since Bonds, Van Slyke, Bonilla, Drabek and Leyland all left for greener pastures. But they all bring in more TV/Radio money than the Reds do.

    I'm not going to pretend that I know how to correct this. Certainly bringing Jr. in didn't help matters any. Perhaps the Reds need someone with better negotiating skills to get more money from FSO. I just read an article about how the Twins started their own cable company called Victory Sports as a vehicle to carry Twins games. During the winter they would carry University of Minnesota hoops but it was basically for the Twins. They couldn't get enough cable systems to carry it though and they had to go back to Fox Sports Net. They did double what they were getting before but the Pohlads who own the Twins lost their shirts on the deal. http://www.startribune.com/stories/503/4766448.html
    Perhaps Lindner & Co. could do something like that to get FSO to increase the money. But the drawback to that would be that the new company may go under and Lindner & Co. would lose a bunch of money.
    The Rally Onion wants 150 fans before Opening Day.

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  5. #34
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    Re: Small Market

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt700wlw
    Building a new staduim was supposed to change all that

    Now they spend less money than they did....

    We're small market because ownership won't let us be anything else...and they sure as hell won't let us forget it everytime they don't make a move or we don't win anything

    Hell they finally make a good move and they still have the throw the "small market" twist in it to explain a move that I think everybody agrees should have been done to better the ballclub!

    They need a PR overhaul and if they're so damn keen on the "small market" excuse, plan, or whatever it may be....they need to clue the fans in what exaclty they plan on doing to make this "small market" a success....
    With all due respect, I believe a great deal of the Reds' marketing/PR troubles lies in the media's constant cynicism. If you've been to Seattle or St Louis or Chicago recently, you'll have noticed that the local media (newspapers, radio, tv) do what they can to sell the team and build the excitement of the club. But with Cincinnati, it couldn't be more opposite. Everything is so doom and gloom oriented that when they finally do make a move (a la Haynes, which the fans and media alike were begging to happen for weeks leading up to), the media instead catches hold of that one "buzz-phrase". I don't get it. Perhaps the FO would be better served to cater to the local media, I don't know. Maybe some new pens or mouse-pads or friendly manner. I really don't know.

    It actually reminds me of the 2002-era Kentucky Basketball program when you had such a negative cloud hanging over the program with local media pounding on the program due to suspensions, transfers, etc that before long, the fans couldn't help but take note. And what happened? Attendance actually fell. Amazing enough, attendance for UK basketball fell. And this for a team that still won 20+ games and challenged nationally and within the conference.

    Perhaps it's a leap of logic on my part (wouldn't be a first), but there seems to be such a cloud now hanging over the Reds. And despite the complaining from the fans, media, whomever, such a tenor rarely produces much but self-fulfilling prophecies of 90-loss seasons. I'm not asking for Polly-Annas to gather at the gates, but this team needs a champion among the public to sell all that is good about this team (of which there is MUCH to be appreciative of). We've got plenty of mouths working to the contrary...

  6. #35
    Member Ron Madden's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Well said BrooklynRedz, GOOD JOB!!!

  7. #36
    Charlie Brown All-Star IslandRed's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou
    Big city towns having been buying it since Kelly went from the White Stockings to the Beaneaters for 10K.
    Not to mention the tremendous advantage they had before the mid-1960s, when there was no draft and the minors were less structured. The rich clubs could buy the best amateur talent and stock more farm clubs. Today, occasionally a low-revenue team will have to pass on a particular player due to signing bonus concerns, but outside the first round it's a level playing field.

    Really, there was only about a ten-year period where teams had equal shots at the talent and the ability to keep it forever if they chose. (Or until 1976, whichever came first.) Luckily for Reds fans, we had some sharp cookies in the front office then and life was good.

    It may be harder on the small-market clubs now in some respects, but one thing hasn't changed -- teams that make good baseball decisions will do well and teams that don't, won't.

  8. #37
    Hey Cubs Fans RFS62's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Let's see now.... the deck has been stacked in favor of teams like the Yankees for over 100 years. And the Yankees have won the Series about 25% of that time.

    Hmmmm.

    So, because it's tradition for a competitive imbalance in MLB, it's OK?

    Personally, I'd like to see us all start on a level playing field revenue wise, and let the smartest front office win. If you make bad decisions, so be it.

    We're fighting the Yankees with one hand tied behind our backs, hopping on one foot. Yep, we land a haymaker every few years, but we get stomped in the meantime.

    That's not a healthy business model.
    "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
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  9. #38
    Haunted by walks
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    Re: Small Market

    Some people may have seen this before, but here's my theory on baseball markets. There are several sizes of markets, and you can overachieve or underachieve in any of them, for awhile.

    Superstation market: Yankees, Red Sox, Braves, Cubs, Mets. The Cubs have underachieved in the recent past. The Mets have some 'splainin' to do.

    Major metro market: Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington if you put a team there, Toronto. Lots of underachievers there.

    Sunbelt market: Florida, Tampa Bay, Texas, Houston, Arizona, San Diego. Florida and Arizona have overachieved (or overspent). Tampa Bay has underachieved. Texas has some 'splainin' to do.

    Pacific Coast market: Seattle, Oakland, San Francisco, Anaheim and Los Angeles. Overachievers are Seattle and Oakland. Los Angeles has some 'splainin' to do.

    Midwest Industrial market: Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Detroit, Milwaukee. Cleveland overachieved for awhile. Detroit underachieved. Milwaukee has some 'splainin' to do.

    Prairie market: Minnesota, St. Louis, Kansas City, White Sox, Colorado. St. Louis and Colorado have overachieved. The White Sox should do better than they do.

    Random notes:
    This groups the teams according to fan base and media power.
    Media contracts are where the huge, exponential gaps have occurred in recent years.
    The difference between 20,000 fans a night in Cincinnati and 40,000 fans a night in Yankee Stadium is real, but it's always been there. What's different is a $7 million media contract vs. a $200 million media contract.

    Nielsen defines the markets instead of me, and that works against the Reds, who must cobble together pieces from the Indianapolis, Louisville, Lexington and West Virginia markets. A savvy Reds owner would work to make that happen, but it's harder work than selling the St. Louis or Houston markets. It's a tough sell to get advertisers on the western side of the Indianapolis market to think they're in the Reds market. The sprawl around St. Louis or Houston is contiguous. A dense population of TV sets. There are a lot of empty cornfields and hillsides in the Reds market.

    Finally: Just because a rich team can be dumb, that doesn't mean a poor team is automatically smart.
    Last edited by BCubb2003; 05-12-2004 at 02:44 AM.

  10. #39
    "So Fla Red"
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    Re: Small Market

    Agree 100% that anyone in the front office using small market is self-defeating. Bottom line is the Reds are within striking distance of all other NL Central teams for Tv/Radio revenue (except the big market Cubs). The focus should be 100% on maximizing stadium revenue, increasing the TV contract and a good place to start is to not talk in a self-defeating manner to your fanbase. Follow the Cards model and make yourself a "mid-market" revenue team in a "small population market" No one wants to be reminded they are "small market", not even people living in Fargo or Billings. Let alone people in a tradition rich and nice area like Cincinnati.

    Add Dayon to the Cinci area and you've got an immediate midsize market of 3 million. Not to mention the other areas of opportunity within 100 miles. And most of this fanbaase has been Reds fans since birth and not consisting of a large % of Sunbelt or immigrant transplants with no local loyalties like some of the new mid/big markets.

    BCubb -- Don't forget the Rangers rolled off quite a few AL West titles in the late 90's.

  11. #40
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    Re: Small Market

    GAC, the reasons why the Reds signed Junior is basically this: Jim Bowden

    My guess is that most of the Reds FO was against the Griffey deal. Bowden after the 99 season got the go ahead to do the deal as a attempt to "jump start" the dormant portions of the Reds market into raising overall revenue for the company. The problem was, the product couldn't match what it did in 99. Lets be clear, the 00 team was a one shot deal. Harnish was about washed up,Neagle was at the tale end of his career height, Parris and Villone were 'treads' and acted like it. So what happens in 2000, a bunch of fanfare, hype and dreams, but in the end:
    1)Steve Parris,Ron Villone,Ed Taubensee and Pokey Reese can't match 1999
    2)Harnich and Casey have bad injuries to begin the season and aren't fully healthy to July
    3)Barry Larkin has injury plagued season
    4)Rob Bell shows early signs of bustdom
    5)Dante Bichette was still on the roster at the start of the season shortening the payroll that had doubled since 1998(24-48 mill, which it was in 1995).
    6)Griffey had a horrible 2 months
    Bowden couldn't afford to miss with the 2000 team. By 100 games it was apparent the team needed some major infusion to even give them a chance in September, not what was expected in April. So they gave up with the Neagle deal,which Bowden busted on. It was a bullet that missed the target and struck Reds fans in the heart. Jr is somebody that maybe doesn't deserve to take the full fall, but he is able target, in the view of the fan. But the deal that supposedly remade the team, destroyed them.

  12. #41
    This could be the year Phil in BG's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    oregonred,
    this is what I've been thinking. With the present set up in MLB, the Reds will never be able to compete in revenue with the Yankees. Still, they could go from small market to mid-market by solidifying their historic geographic market. I don't have the answers on how to do it, but I do believe it starts with winning. A Cleveland fan base sprung up out of nowhere in the early nineties. I think they are mostly fair-weather fans, but they sure spent money. There are many closet Reds fans throughout the area just waiting to jump on the bandwagon. I understand these fans aren't necessarily true fans, but they do spend money.

    The bottom line still is for MLB to find a way to share at least media revenue.
    Last edited by Phil in BG; 05-12-2004 at 06:48 AM.

  13. #42
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    Re: Small Market

    If Linder invested a bit more in the team (ie. better pitching), it'd be better and thus would draw more fans. This would equal more revenue to invest back into the club. In business you have to spend money to make money, and i'm surprised he doesnt apply this rule to his baseball team. He is a good businessman after all or else he wouldnt be a billionaire.

  14. #43
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou
    The early Cubs and White sox and then Yankees and Giants and later the Dodgers are proof that that statment isn't a whole truth. Shoot, look at the little success of the small market Browns and the small market Senators over the years. The Phillies were 2nd tier in their own city thus making them "small market" and they stunk for most of their existence.

    Big city towns having been buying it since Kelly went from the White Stockings to the Beaneaters for 10K. The only way you beat the big market is with innovation, thus Branch Rickey, thuse Bob Howsam, thus Sandy Alderson, thus Billy Beane.
    I agree woy that the "big city towns have been buying it", and have always had an advantage over the smaller market teams; but my point is that there wasn't the huge disparity then as we have seen come into existence currently. The "gap" (or gulf) has grown even wider and wider.

    And just because one is deemed a large market team, that does not equate into success (historically speaking) (i.e. the Cubs and Red Sox come to mind).

    Acknowledging that one is a small market team does not mean that they are doomed to always be mediocre or not have success. And I didn't get to hear O'Brien's recent remarks; but from what a couple people have told me who did, they intepreted O'Brien to be saying, due to the small market label, to not expect much from the Reds. Now if O'Brien truly said this, then that disappoints me alot. Because that type of approach or mentality will get you nowhere then.
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations

  15. #44
    Unsolicited Opinions traderumor's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    In business you have to spend money to make money, and i'm surprised he doesnt apply this rule to his baseball team.
    Probably because it isn't a rule. There are lots of folks spending money that lose their shirts doing so. I'm not sure what business school is making that statement, but I sure do hear a lot people repeating it without apparently thinking it through.

  16. #45
    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Quote Originally Posted by Bowden's Ghost
    If Linder invested a bit more in the team (ie. better pitching), it'd be better and thus would draw more fans. This would equal more revenue to invest back into the club. In business you have to spend money to make money, and i'm surprised he doesnt apply this rule to his baseball team. He is a good businessman after all or else he wouldnt be a billionaire.
    But if Linder opened up his own pockets (which a majority of owners are not doing, but instead are relying on revenue generated by the organization itself, along with lucrative cable/TV deals, etc.), and went out and spent 15 Mil and acquired a couple good rotation guys, then how/where would that revenue be generated to help him recoup/offset that?

    Gate receipts? I doubt it.
    Last edited by GAC; 05-12-2004 at 09:28 AM.
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations


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