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Thread: Small Market

  1. #1
    This could be the year Phil in BG's Avatar
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    Small Market

    I heard a little blip on WLW this morning where Dan O'Brien was discussing the release of Jimmy Haynes and referred to the Reds as a small market team. He said that since the Reds are a small market team you always have to consider the financial aspect when considering a release of this nature.

    This brings up a few questions.
    What makes a small market? Is it just the metropolitan population of a given team? Is it the cable tv/radio contracts and their viewing draw? The revenue?
    Are the Reds in a small market?
    Is it possible to go from a small market team to a medium market? Didn't Cleveland do that a few years ago? What about St. Louis or Colorado?

    Dan's comment bothered me. Maybe I just don't like the terminology, but I thought it sounded like an excuse.

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  3. #2
    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    It's the revenue - which is tied into media contracts and attendance. It's entirely possible to go from a small to a medium/large market. Cleveland is a good example as is Atlanta and Seattle.
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  4. #3
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    Re: Small Market

    and it is just as easy to fall right back into the "small" market after a few years of high living.

  5. #4
    The wino and I know bucksfan's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    It hit me the same way, Phil. Just the phrasing, whether reality or not, made it sound lame to me. I mean, (unless you are the Yankees or Red Sox apparently) ANY business needs to consider the financial impacts of their moves. Bringing the dreaded term "small market" into the picture sounds like we are in a situation hardly anyone else is, which as far as I can tell, is not true. Not that anything he said is necessarily wrong, just the perception it reinforces...
    "I'm virtually free to do whatever I want, but I try to remember so is everybody else..." - Todd Snider

  6. #5
    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Quote Originally Posted by Aronchis
    and it is just as easy to fall right back into the "small" market after a few years of high living.
    We did not get the few years of high living
    Go Gators!

  7. #6
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    Re: Small Market

    The Reds have always been 'small market' They were small market when they gave their managing job to a guy who was an ex pitcher whose claim to fame was he umped the Merkle Boner game. They were small market when they traded their manager mid season for another manager and they were small market when McGraw was buying championships for the Giants year in and year out and Henie Grohl or Eddie Roush were holding out for an extras couple of thousand bucks, sometimes until June.

    They were small market when they only drew 425 K in the 33-34 season combined, they were small market when they came in 7th or 8th in attendance in an 8 team league every year between 1945-1955.

    They were small market in their approach when Free Agency became a reality, and they were small market in the day and age of cable television and missed establishing a superstation when the iron was hot.

    Cincinnati is a conservative city, the Reds have been a mirror of this for most of their existence. To me it's a historical reality that is ingrained in the culture of the club and the approach it has to ideas as well as it's approach to it's fanbase.

    The Reds historically have only experienced change when they go outside of the current regime and try something different, it happened with the arrival of Mathewson in 1916 and was apparent in the Mid 30's with the arrival of McPhail, the 60's with Howsam and the 80's with a renewed Howsam.

    Bowden failed to bring wholesale change and now once again the marketplace has shifted leaving everyone to wonder what is the proper course out of the abyss.

    Knowing Cincinnati I say that the limiteds like DO and his deliberate style, probably fits in with their fiscal conservatism.

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    Re: Small Market

    That is because the revenue exploded with high revenue teams and the Reds didn't put good products on the field most of the time. The 2001-03 teams were downright horrible. The 2002 team was a poor mans 99 which would have been a money blackhole after "buying" upgrades like Rolen or trading Kearns for Colon wouldn't have pushed the Reds past the Cards that year. The Reds seemed talent challenged every year, only getting by on pure guts and lucky retreads. Everybody has become cynical and we are beginning another rebuilding plan. If you want to be even more dire about the Reds situation during 97-2003, we scimpped a little on Farm spending in my opinion, which would have made payrolls even lower if funded properly!!!!!

    A payroll of 59.3 mill sounded good in 1997, but it didn't help as much in 2003. Reds baseball has been in a recession since the mid-90's, you could see it coming in 95 and it has never recovered. Heck, even Schott got sick of it and quit funding, pushing the team toward victory by 1996. Bad management has not given the Reds the cheap talent needed to compete on a yearly basis. The Ownership is conservative, scared if some moves come about that will cause money windfall and no payback(playoffs,WS) comes it will strangle the franchise.

    You can say the Reds are a small market team by choice, but in the same, other teams(Baltimore) have had it roughly the same time period of struggle, but can still spend money on Big FA's.

    The Reds then, are a Small Market team because
    1)Their plan did not give the Reds a better product or increase revenue 2)They will NOT have the money of probably about 10-15 teams, a fact, the diehard Reds fan will have to accept.

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    Re: Small Market

    I don't like the way they seem to say it. They're saying small market, but I swear that they're saying small goals

  10. #9
    The wino and I know bucksfan's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Quote Originally Posted by princeton
    I don't like the way they seem to say it. They're saying small market, but I swear that they're saying small goals

    well put
    "I'm virtually free to do whatever I want, but I try to remember so is everybody else..." - Todd Snider

  11. #10
    Hisssssssss Yachtzee's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    woy, I agree. The mentality of the team ownership and, to a degree, the city itself reflects a conservativism that abhors drastic changes. Unfortunately, today's marketplace dictates that smaller market teams be on the cutting edge with new ideas and techniques in order to get a jump on the other teams.

    I think the Reds' way of doing business will change only when a drastic change in the ownership structure comes about. If and when that happens, we can only hope that the new owners bring with them a drive to succeed through innovation rather than a fatalistic resignation to mediocrity. I also hope ban the phrase "small market" from their vocabulary. To paraphrase Forrest Gump, small market is as small market does.

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    Re: Small Market

    Small Market = Small Minded.
    I'm East of you. Be very very worried. Not quite OBX. But, be worried.

  13. #12
    Charlie Brown All-Star IslandRed's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Well, there are really two issues here, one being your market and the other being your revenues. Market size has a significant impact on revenues, obviously, but it's not the only factor. Attendance, lease terms, corporate presence, regional popularity and TV/radio contracts all matter. (Local media deals are the primary cause of disparity in team revenues, though.)

    By any measure, the Reds are in the bottom third of baseball cities in terms of market size. But that doesn't mean they have to stay small-revenue forever. Cleveland and Seattle are great examples of former sad-sack franchises that got it together and turned into revenue monsters (without benefit of a superstation, e.g. Atlanta). St. Louis is another good example of making the best of a middling market.

    Now, there's an obvious correlation between those franchises turning into gold mines and extended periods of winning. So you'd think the lesson would be obvious -- spend money, turn the team into a winner, then sit back and watch the cash roll in. But the other obvious lesson of baseball history is that free spending gets you nowhere as often as not. Call it the Jacobs/Hicks Paradox.

  14. #13
    This could be the year Phil in BG's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Well said IslandRed....that's pretty much how I see it.

  15. #14
    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    I made a post a few weeks ago about 2001 revenues for MLB. The numbers stated that the Reds finished a respectable 20th out of 30 teams in gate receipts. All things considered that wasn't too bad if you remember how lousy a season 2001 was. But if you look at the local revenues - which include TV, Cable and radio revenues - the Reds finished a paltry 26th behind such teams as Pittsburgh, Florida, San Diego and Tampa Bay. What that tells me is the Reds can compete revenue wise with a lot of teams but the TV deal is a real millstone. Attendance revenues can only be so high. If they sold out every game they would draw over 3M fans. If the average ticket price is $20 per ticket that is still just $60M which is competitive with most teams except for NY, Seattle and Boston. But the TV deal is something that has more potential.
    The Rally Onion wants 150 fans before Opening Day.

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  16. #15
    "Let's Roll" TeamBoone's Avatar
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    Re: Small Market

    Quote Originally Posted by Yachtzee
    The mentality of the team ownership and, to a degree, the city itself reflects a conservativism that abhors drastic changes. Unfortunately, today's marketplace dictates that smaller market teams be on the cutting edge with new ideas and techniques in order to get a jump on the other teams.

    I think the Reds' way of doing business will change only when a drastic change in the ownership structure comes about. If and when that happens, we can only hope that the new owners bring with them a drive to succeed through innovation rather than a fatalistic resignation to mediocrity. I also hope ban the phrase "small market" from their vocabulary. To paraphrase Forrest Gump, small market is as small market does.
    What exactly are other "small market" teams doing that are "cutting edge new ideas and techniques"? And just exactly what would an owner need to do to "succeed through innovation"?

    Just curious, because I don't have a clue as to what you are suggesting.
    "Enjoy this Reds fans, you are watching a legend grow up before your very eyes" ... DoogMinAmo on Adam Dunn


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