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Let's put a third team in New York

Dec 28, 2009, 6:00 PM EDT

While we all grouse about how much money the Yankees have, Sports Illustrated’s Tim Marchman reminds us why, exactly, they have so much money:

According to the measure used by the Office of Management and Budget, the New York metropolitan
region numbers about 19 million people. In other words, New York has
one MLB team for every 9.5 million people. Chicago, by this measure,
has one for every five million people, just as Miami and Atlanta do.
Los Angeles has one for every 6.5 million people, as do Dallas and
Philadelphia.

So, with such an inherent advantage in eyes, which gives their cable outlet an inherent advantage in revenue, which gives the team so much more money, the obvious solution is to impose a salary cap, right? No, silly. That’s hard. This is much easier, at least theoretically-speaking:

The better solution would be to place a third team in New York. That
would bring the town’s population:team ratio down to the level of Los
Angeles or Philadelphia, and with the same number of people and dollars
chasing more baseball, would quite likely bring Yankee spending down a
hair without doing anything punitive or unfair.

Easier in that the territorial rights system which keeps a third team out of Gotham could be cast aside by the owners themselves, whereas a salary cap would require a labor battle that the owners could never win.

Not that getting the owners to roll over for that would be easy — both New York teams and their affiliated interests would go crazy, and the teams in Los Angeles and Chicago could fear that they’d be next.  Plus, you have the small problem of where specifically a third New York team would play and who would pay the billion dollars+ for the building.  New Jersey, in a ballpark paid for buy an eccentric billionaire?  OK, we’ll work on it.

The point is that a third team in New York is merely hard, not impossible.  It worked for nearly sixty years, so it could work again.  At any rate, it seems more realistic to agitate for that than it would to agitate for a salary cap.

  1. HLGNY4 - Dec 29, 2009 at 12:43 PM

    There are also 2 minor lerague baseball teams in NY City (Brooklyn Cyclones and Staten Island Yankees), the Newark bears not too far away in Jersey and the Ducks in Islip(Long Island). The Mets battled for a while for permission to bring their minor league Cyclones into the city and that only happened with the Yankees deal to move a team onto Staten Island. These are all very successfull financialy. Ownership would not allow a third Major league team, but if they could have built the west side stadium in Manhattan that was proposed in the NY bid for the 2012 Olympics there would have been a chance. Any sports team located in Manhattan has an incredible advantage based on the ease of public transport and most importantly the incredible volume of businesses that would buy up season tickets and luxury suites. They may not develope a loyal fanbase against the entrenched Yanks and Mets but they would certainly succeed financialy. It is all moot.

  2. TigerS Boy ToY - Dec 29, 2009 at 12:53 PM

    The better solution would be to place a third team in New York
    HE WROTE NEW YORK NOT NEW JERSEY, NEW JERSEY IS WHERE ALL THE REJECTED NEW YORKERS ARE SENT.WHY DO PEOPLE ASSOCIATE NEW JERSEY
    AS PART OF NEW YORK I CAN’T UNDERSTAND, NEW JERSEY IS SWAMP LAND.
    BUH BYE

  3. JustPassingThrough - Dec 29, 2009 at 1:23 PM

    Do u know what sport u are talking about? The above article is referring to Baseball & not Football (which, technically, they have 2 teams playing in the state of New York). Can u guess which one plays in NJ?

  4. scott from peekskill - Dec 30, 2009 at 10:52 AM

    Salary Cap. Not impossible, absolutely necessary. The cap would screw the Yankees as they could no longer simply buy the best FA available every offseason. The players Association may strike but it would be a losing cause. Few fans are going to support players that are driving their favorite teams into oblivion, fans loyalty are always to their teams not players. 100% revenue sharing in the same manner as the NFL and an exemption for homegrown talent from the cap.

  5. larry - Dec 30, 2009 at 3:05 PM

    Ken, Metro Detroit, almost 5 million, much bigger than the IE, whatever that is

  6. john mccoy - Dec 31, 2009 at 12:31 PM

    Long Island would be a great location for the Tampa Bay Rays!

  7. BennyN - Dec 31, 2009 at 1:56 PM

    SO New York City is not a city?
    I guess the 5 buroughs don’t represent anything.
    Thanks James

  8. Chris - Jan 1, 2010 at 10:00 PM

    This is a stupid idea because you are making the leap that a brand new team would instantly have the SAME number of fans as the Yankees & Mets which wouldn’t be the case. The new teams’ miniscule fanbase would be swallowed up by the Yankees and Mets fanbases. Also, the Yankees and Mets would team up to not allow a new team.
    An expansion team in NY at this point would be impossible, just because you cherry-pick a statistic like population/team doesn’t mean it has any meaning.
    Also, the Yankees are a national, if not global, team with a lot more than 9.5 million fans.
    Manchester, England only has 464,000 people but Manchester United is also a global team that isn’t limited by its borders.
    The Yankees and Mets would economicly destroy any new team that came along.

  9. Wiley Pemble - Jan 20, 2010 at 10:07 PM

    Schoene Seite! Dieser Artikel ist gut geschrieben. Danke dafuer.

  10. Leigh Higuera - Jan 21, 2010 at 12:54 PM

    Ich bin dabei, wo kann man sich einloggen :)

  11. bryoneill11 - Jan 25, 2010 at 12:12 AM

    hey you forgot Puerto Rico we are 4 million people. We are baseball fans. We almost get the expos off montreal. And we deserves a team in the MLB. We have a lot of amazing baseball players in MLB.

  12. Amado Widdoes - Feb 9, 2010 at 6:39 PM

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  13. Adam Mizzell - Feb 23, 2010 at 3:33 PM

    I really like the fresh perpective you did on the issue. Really was not expecting that when I started off studying. Your concepts were easy to understand that I wondered why I never looked at it before. Glad to know that there’s an individual out there that definitely understands what he’s discussing. Great job

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