The New York Yankees now have a value of $ 3.7 billion.
That’s what Forbes says has been publishing the list of baseball’s most valuable franchises for the last 20 years. Each year, the Yankees have emerged as the most valuable franchise, and this time has a nearly $ 1 billion plus advantage over the next franchise on the list, the Los Angeles Dodgers ($ 2.75 billion).
The magazine says the average value of a Major League team is now $ 1.54 billion, 19 percent more than a year ago. One factor that has helped in this increase is MLB Advanced Media, the digital and technology arm of the Major Leagues that has experienced great growth in recent years and whose ownership is shared equally by the Major Teams.
Rounding out the list of the five most valuable franchises are the Boston Red Sox ($ 2.7 billion), the Chicago Cubs ($ 2.675 billion) and the San Francisco Giants ($ 2.65 billion).
The five most valuable franchises have won six of the last eight World Series. The current Cubs champions have seen their value skyrocket in recent years.
When the Ricketts family bought the equipment and a piece of the local TV chain for $ 845 million in 2009, then a record for an MLB franchise, many thought that price was too high, especially in the midst of a troubled economy .
But for the past seven seasons, Forbes has projected that the Cubs’ value has increased by more than 180 percent, taking inflation into account.
With little help from the city, the Ricketts family has been able to reinvest a large part of its profits in the stadium, building buildings with ceilings alive to the stadium as well as through its investment firm Hickory Street Capital Partners, rebuilding part of Wrigleyville. A new plaza, called The Park at Wrigley, adjacent to the stadium, was opened Monday.
“We’ve always talked about them in the strategic plan that the business side and the baseball side must be united,” Tom Ricketts told ESPN.com on Monday. “We are truly fortunate to have made the right moves so that all this has happened. Everything we have done outside the field, everything we have done on the ground, everything we are doing on the ground has paid off.”
The Steinbrenner family has owned the Yankees since 1973, the longest-running group of owners in a baseball-wide team. The group organized by George Steinbrenner paid $ 10 million for the team, acquiring it from CBS, which sold to the Yankees for $ 3.2 million less than what they paid for it.
Taking into account inflation, the value of the Yankees has increased 6.627 percent since the Steinbrenner bought it.