New York Yankees: The Not So Evil Empire New York Yankees: The Not So Evil Empire New York Yankees: The Not So Evil Empire

New York Yankees: The Not So Evil Empire

The media has always made the New York Yankees payroll a focal point for criticizing the franchise for, in truth, their generous wallets.

So, after reading the recent article by Ronald Blum of the NY Post about how Yankees Alex Rodriguez is earning a paycheck that is just shy of the entire payroll of the Kansas City Royals, it got me thinking.…

This topic is not anything new for Yankee fans or anyone for that matter, but just as the media thrives on reminding people why to resent the Yankees, fans like myself need to let you know the truth.

The fact is the Yankees reputation is based on famously over-paying players, that are undeserving and overrated. The Yankee haters claim they grab the best of whatever the current baseball market has to offer, and unfairly presenting individuals with monster contracts that are impossible to match or to decline.

This way of thinking made me feel sorry for the literally poor Royals, as their lack of success was being hampered by their own abilities to offer only petty paychecks. This makes it seem that what is just one player to the Yankees could be new life for the Royals.

So, are the Yankees to blame for this and are they worthy of this reputation?

Most definitely, but why is this such an ‘evil’ thing? The Yankees aren’t stealing or asking for handouts, and the owners are beyond generous in their efforts to give New York the best team they possibly can.

Now, back to Blum’s article.

Blum was not openly criticizing A-rod or the Yankees, it is a mere comparison of actual numbers. It also reminded everyone, like we could forget, how rich A-rod is and how much the Yankees spend.

Blum is stating proven facts, and it makes the Royals out like abandoned orphans who are doing the best with what they have.

Conveniently, Blum omitted some important facts that made me change my whole original thoughts.

Here is what was left out:

Blum’s article states:

Kansas City’s payroll was cut in half from $72.3 million at the start of 2010. The Royals traded Zach Greinke and Gil Meche retired. The Yankees, as usual, had the top payroll but dropped to $201.7 million from $206.3 million at the start of last season.

This explains the Royals payroll, which currently stands at $36.1 million.

What Blum forgot to mention was that after the 2010 season, the Royals received a revenue check for $32 million (or more). This check comes out of the wealthy pockets of teams like the Yankees, Red Sox and Phillies, who each give up 34% profits so these lower market ball-clubs, like the Royals can have the funds to stay competitive.

According to Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star, Forbes reported that the Royals are worth $351 million and that 2010 marked the seventh running year in a row the Royals have finished the season in the black (meaning the Royals were profitable). This was shocking, until I did some research on my own.

The Royals owner, David Glass the former President and Chief Executive Officer of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc is worth billions of dollars. Translation is that Glass could spend $50 million on his team without blinking an eye, but instead Glass makes a profit at the expense of giving Royals fans a non-contending team.

While running Wal-Mart, Glass was the anchor behind the company’s expansion. The methods and ethics used to obtain the success with Wal-Mark are horrific. Glass boasted the fact that Wal-Mart products were made in the USA, when the truth is they were coming out of sweat-shops in Asia. You can read his reactions when asked about by Dateline in this blurb called NAILED in TIME MAGAZINE.

This makes me feel even worse for Kansas City and the Royals fans because their beloved ball-club is at the hands of a greedy billionaire, whose priority is to add more zeros onto his billions.

In turn, this makes Blum’s article lose its creditability, as it is pointless without giving us all the facts. Unless, Blum was just taking a subtle jab to remind people why they should hate A-rod and the Yankees.

All Yankee fans can do is thank their lucky stars that the Steinbrenner family is so overly unselfish.

The Yankees beloved Boss, and now his sons continually go above and beyond, season after season in their efforts to give New York fans and the Yankees players everything possible to achieve successfulness .

A personal favorite of mine, ESPN and ex-MLB player John Kruk said it best following the Yankees 2009 World Series win on BBTN:

“You can say anything you want about the New York Yankees, their bad for baseball, bad for sports.….they make money, they spend money, they win Championships. Is that to tough to understand for your fans? That’s a great message.”

Maybe situations, like the Royals fans are enduring can somehow be fixed because it is not fair.

Without all the facts, and considering baseball teams legally do not have to make their finances public, it is easy to blame the likes of the Yankees for buying all the success.

In essence, writers like Blum could help out baseball without lying by omission and putting the spotlight on the real problems behind teams like the Royals lack of funding. The subject has been touched, but not nearly enough to make the public realize it.

Owners of sports teams need to be loyal fans first, so it doesn’t lead to losing teams and unfair disappointment.

Understandably, sports franchises have to be run at the core like any other company, but is this the way a good business runs? It sure doesn’t seem like it to me.

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  1. Uncle Mike says:

    Here's the thing, Kate: As Marvin Miller taught us about the Collusion Scandal of the 1980s, when a team refuses to spend money to improve itself, it is announcing its intention to lose. When players lose games on purpose, they get banned for life. When owners lose games on purpose, they get… praised by their fellow owners for following "a sound business model."

    Remember "The American President"? I'm going to twist Michael Douglas' speech at the end and say, "Yes, my team IS trying to buy the Pennant every year. The question is, why aren't YOU, David Glass?"

    • Kate says:

      MIke – I agree with you and it is beyond twisted. The rules apply to different people, in different ways but they have to live with themselves and it might not seem so bad presently, but it always comes back to bite you in the arse!!

  2. Kurt Smith says:

    Well put, Kate. During the strike of 1994 Orioles owner Peter Angelos was one of the few owners who was actually in the players' corner, and he challenged that the rest of the owners open their books. None of these guys are destitute, and the small-market excuse is not an excuse. The Yankees developed their own television network; there's no reason other teams can't do the same thing.

    Everyone talks about the Yankees getting A-Rod, Sabathia, Teixeira and other stars. No one seems to remember Hideki Irabu, or A.J. Burnett for that matter.

    I'm no fan of Angelos by any stretch, but he was right on that one. If other teams wanted to compete they could. The Marlins certainly don't play in a small market, but they sure act like they do.

    • Kate says:

      Thank you Kurt….if a team wants to be attractive to players it needs to demonstrate that it is willing to go above and beyond for their team to be successful. No one wants to go play for a perennial loser, who's owner is the Grinch.

      Jayson Werth got paid so much because the Nationals knew that he was playing on a great, winning team (Phillies) and the money is almost like a compensation. At the same time it is in an investment, a sign things are going to change and go in the right direction.

      The Royals have history and to think that is getting destroyed because of an owner is sickening. Call the Yankees evil, but if that is evil then sign me up!!

  3. Juke Early says:

    The original statement from Larry Lucchino actually said the Yankees were "like" the Evil Empire, characterizing his Boston team as underdogs. Since that time, it's clear his organization is much more evil both now & prior to his blowhard comments. Naturally the Red Sox fans adopted it, along with the Yankee haters in the media. Previously all the drunk rooter at Fenway could come up with was – Yankees suck.

    On a forum that shall remain nameless, I once theoretically posited what would happen to MLB revenues if the NYY laid out for just one season. The intellectually challenged commenters couldn't grasp a hypothetical, and I was rewarded with having the question removed! now that's evil. Recent news that the Yankees are billions of dollars ahead in terms of sports franchise valuation, than whatever is in second place, easily proves the point made here.

    In no way would I make light of economic hardship in any area. Any business needs paying customers, whether it's Wal Mart or MLB. And times are still in flux all over. I shop at Wal Mart for a lot of reasons. They do sell some US made products. But they sure do import too – some is quality merchandise; some not so much.

    The Yankees are quality. Compared to the rest, they are proven winners. But they are only human. They just do it better.