FanPost

Local Broadcast Revenue

(A story on Pirates Prospects that referenced the Dodgers' $7 billion, $280,000,000 per year deal got me thinking....)

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Baseball's local television model has never made sense to me.

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When you stop and think about it, the Dodgers aren’t selling the rights to 162 “Dodger games” per year. They’re selling the rights to six “Dodger-Pirate games” and six “Dodger-Cardinal games” and nineteen “Dodger-Padre games” and so on and so forth.

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Could the Pirates go to another cable network in the LA area and sell them the rights to the six games they play against the Dodgers each summer? Why not? It’s a “Pirate game” every bit as much as it is a “Dodger game” isn’t it? So why can the Dodgers sell the six games to the LA market for $10,370,370 while the Pirates only get to sell them to the Pittsburgh market? Because the Dodgers hat says LA on it? So what?

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In my view that $280,000,000 should be divided by the 162 games that it pays for (it comes to $1,728,395 per game). The two participating teams in each game can then split that game revenue (as well as the game revenue from the other team’s market).

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You can argue that teams like they Yankees and Dodgers bring more eyes to televisions than they Bucs or Padres (as reflected by their local deals) and should get more of the money, just like Floyd Mayweather gets more money than the guy he fights. But they still will. The Dodgers will still end up with $140,000,000 every year from this deal (while the Pirates will get half of the paltry Pittsburgh deal). They’ll also get a small piece of every other local tv deal based on the games they play that are shown in Pittsburgh, St. Louis, San Diego, etc. (plus their share of MLB’s national TV deal).

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This still isn’t even close to what the NFL does. The NFL sells broadcast rights for the entire league to a few networks, who decide which games to show in which markets. The 32 franchises split the revenue from those deals. The NFL doesn’t care how many people were rooting for the Giants and how many we’re rooting for the Chargers……because they all tuned in to watch “the Chargers-Giants game”.

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What do you guys think?

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of the managing editor (Charlie) or SB Nation. FanPosts are written by Bucs Dugout readers.

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