NEW YORK – Forbes has released its 19th annual ranking of Major League Baseball’s 30 most valuable teams and the New York Yankees remain the most valuable team for the 19th consecutive year, worth $3.4 billion. The Bronx Bombers have held the top spot since Forbes began tracking MLB finances in 1998 and generate more revenue ($516 million after revenue sharing) than any other baseball team.
According to Forbes, the average baseball team is now worth $1.3 billion, up 7% from a year ago and 59% higher than in 2014.
The financial strength and big value increases of MLB illustrated in Forbes’ valuations is due to new, or anticipated, richer national broadcasting deals. The Astros rose 38% in value, to $1.1 billion, as Houston’s new cable deal kicked in last season. The Cardinals increased 14% in value, to $1.6 billion, because the team inked a much more valuable cable television deal that will begin in 2018. The Arizona Diamondbacks new cable deal, which was anticipated over a year ago, begins this season and sent the value of the team up 10%, to $925 million. The value of the Cubs rose 22%, to $2.2 billion. Chicago wants to launch their own regional sports network after the 2019 season.
Methodology: Forbes team values are enterprise values (equity plus net debt) based on the revenue multiples of past transactions. Forbes makes adjustments for teams getting new ballparks. The enterprise values exclude equity teams have in non-baseball assets, such as real estate, regional sports networks or concession businesses. The revenue figures we show for each team include all money the teams get, including tickets and premium seating, media, concessions and merchandise, licensing and other distributions from MLB’s central fund, as well as non-baseball stadium events like concerts and soccer games. Revenue is net of annual stadium debt service for which the team is responsible, as well as money teams receive, or pay, as part of the league’s local revenue-sharing system. Luxury payroll tax figures paid to MLB are subtracted from the team’s operating income.
This year’s Top 10 Most Valuable Major League Baseball Teams are:
|1||New York Yankees||Steinbrenner Family||$3,400||6%||$516||$13.0|
|2||Los Angeles Dodgers||Guggenheim Baseball Management||2,500||4||438||-73.2|
|3||Boston Red Sox||John Henry, Thomas Werner||2,300||10||398||43.2|
|4||San Francisco Giants||Charles Johnson||2,250||12||409||72.6|
|5||Chicago Cubs||Ricketts Family||2,200||22||340||50.8|
|6||New York Mets||Fred & Jeff Wilpon, Saul Katz||1,650||22||313||46.8|
|7||St Louis Cardinals||William DeWitt Jr.||1,600||14||300||59.8|
|8||Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim||Arturo Moreno||1,340||3||312||41.7|
|9||Washington Nationals||Lerner family||1,300||2||293||22.5|
|10||Philadelphia Phillies||Partnership led by John Middleton||1,235||-1||263||-8.9|