URL Weaver: Big Business

The rich get richer. The New York Yankees set the standard for professional baseball teams with the YES Network, a broadcast corporation created with an eye to leveraging better broadcast rights for their “product.” This turned out to be a wise decision indeed, and the value of YES grew and grew – keeping the Yankees awash in cash.

The swelling price of broadcast rights and increasing scarcity of live view television properties makes a company like YES, which pays just $85 million dollars a year for the rights to Yankees games, incredibly valuable to other investors. And now, with that value at an all-time high, the investors have pounced.

News Corporation, also known as News Corp also known as the Devil’s plaything, will increase its stake in YES, paying $2 billion dollars for a 49% stake in the YES network according to the New York Times. Terms of the deal are rife with legalese for which I have no time but the jist of the deal ensures YES the Yankees broadcast rights until 2042. Yikes.

News Corp might control the rights but the Yankees look to retain their grip on the content, insuring all YES viewers a tightly-closed loop of Yankee lore and Michael Kay for the immediate future.

The business sides of the game are not my particular area of strength nor is something I spend a great deal of time worrying about. The corporate layers and hierarchies might fund the decisions on the field but, in an ideal world, they don’t affect them. Either way, we are mostly just pawns in this larger game of “attract the eyeballs.”

Odious as many of us find the business side of the stick and ball game we love, it is a fact of modern entertainment life. The devotion and enjoyment we get from watching, participating and investing is valuable as the games we watch are a commodity. Like it or lump, the money is here to stay. It is our choice whether we wish to participate in the corporate song-and-dance.

And the Rest

Everybody loves Gibby! [DJF]

Jeff Passan thinks the Marlins should trade Giancarlo Stanton for all the prospects. [Y! Sports]

Joe Posnanski, how he does go on [Joe Pos blog]

The Cubs DFA’d All Star Bryan LaHair and are looking to get him work in Japan. He as an All Star, AN ALL STAR! [View from the Bleachers]

C.J. Nitkowski on the value of coaching [Baseball Prospectus]

Giancarlo Stanton versus breaking stuff, Stanton wins. [Baseball Analytics]

Emma Span on the Blue Jays – not ready to win the AL East but not far off [Sports on Earth]

Does changing leagues change a hitter’s walk rate? [Beyond the Boxscore]

Comments (3)

  1. Pretty sure the Yankees get more than $85 million from YES for the rights. The $85 million is the amount MLB records for revenue sharing purposes.

    • Ahh never mind technically you are correct but it doesn’t count the money the Yankees get from their 34% stake in YES or whatever it’s been reduced to now.

  2. If news corps buys YES I have a feeling they will allow Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity to be their new commentators.

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