Pennants & Profits : An Economic Analysis of Major League Baseball
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This paper addresses the economic and labor relations issues that face Major League Baseball. Part II discusses the evolution of baseball’s unique legal institutions and practices to provide a context for understanding its present predicament. Part III attempts to uncover and disentangle the reality of game’s financial condition-profits, franchise values, attendance and ticket-pricing, monopoly rents, tax write offs, and so on. Part IV will analyze player salaries and their relationship to performance and competitive balance among the twenty-eight major league baseball teams. Parts V and VI address the changing world of baseball and attempt to bring the disparate elements of the economics of baseball together, and to consider internal solutions, as well as public policy options for overcoming catastrophe. Yet, as we shall see, if catastrophe should befall the sport, Major League Baseball has no one to blame but itself. Society's support of the game, from ballpark attendance to media infatuation, is robust and rising. Commercialism, greed, and poor management do threaten the game, but solutions are well within grasp of the long-dormant public policy toward our national pastime.