Blog: Today illustrates why Major League Baseball has lost me as a fan


I used to be a baseball fan.

Not a fan that watched 162 games, but I cared about it a lot more than I do now.

Today was a perfect example why I - and a lot of people my age - just don't care anymore: the rich get richer. Every year. Without fail.

The two big trades made at today's Trade Deadline were Yu Darvish going from Texas (6th highest payroll @ $175.9 million) to the Dodgers (highest payroll @ $242 million), and Sonny Gray going from Oakland (27th highest payroll @ $81.7 million) to the Yankees (2nd highest payroll @ $201.5 million). It's not just trades, either: in free agency, those same big-market teams have a distinct advantage over small-market teams.

Baseball seems to be the only sport that, historically, gives small-market teams about a 0.001 percent chance of winning the World Series. Okay, I'm exaggerating a little, but check this out: since 1990, every World Series winner has been in the Top 15 cities in America (based on TV Market size), except in the following four seasons:

* 1990: Cincinnati Reds (36th biggest TV market in America)
* 2006 & 2011: St. Louis Cardinals (21st biggest TV market in America)
* 2015: Kansas City Royals (33rd biggest TV market in America)

How does that compare to the NFL and NBA over the same time period? Not favorably for baseball:

In the NBA, there have been nine championships won by teams from TV markets outside of the top 15: Cleveland (2016), San Antonio (1999, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2014), & Miami (2006, 2012, 2013).

In the NFL, it's happened 15 times: Green Bay (1997, 2011), Denver (1998, 1999, 2016), St. Louis (2000), Baltimore (2001, 2013), New England (2002, 2004, 2005, 2015, 2017), Indianapolis (2007), New Orleans (2010).

This is just one man talking - I get that. But I prefer parity in my sports leagues - parity when it comes to championships, when it comes to landing key free agents, and when it comes to having the capital to acquire large contracts at the trade deadline.