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PghUSA

Pittsburgh boasts 8th most profitable MLB franchise

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http://www.bizjournals.com/pittsburgh/stor...tml?jst=b_ln_hl

Pretty nice article on how Nutting and McClatchey are running things at 100 Mazeroski Way, the Pirates made more money this past season then the BoSox or Yankees! That might sound like excellent news, but profit is sometimes only whats left when you don't spend on talent or reinvest in the TV networks, fan friendly accessories etc. The Pirate were a paltry 24th in value (or networth), and 26th in revenue. So yes the cashflow doesn't look good at all, and as they say the cashflow is the gravy of any business, or you gotta spend it to make it.

It is interesting that Cleveland ranked #1 for profit but also the middle or lower on value and revenue. Time to bring in Mark Cuban, he will flip this equation real quick (networth up and unused cash down).

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How is the popularity of the Pirates now a days? There last peak was back when Bonds and Bonilla played was it not?

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I don't think this is a cause for celebration. It shows how pathetic this ownership is. The fans keep going to the games and forking over their cash... and get nothing in return. But the Nuttings are making money.. so hooray for them.

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as per populatiry, its a tribute to PNC Park that even though the Pirates get worse and worse, but their attendance is going up. I don't even go to games to watch them anymore, its just a cool atmosphere.

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The Pirates are a joke. After 15 seasons of pathetic performance... there are very few people that are hardcore about the team... it's hard to be considering they are usually mathematically eliminated by May. I usually get my hopes up every season for a .500 season but am quickly disappointed. I wear a Pirates hat just cuz it looks cool and shows "Pittsburgh pride"... not because I'm supporting the Pirates. Even if Pittsburgh... if you admit you follow the Pirates, you'll be laughed at. You'd have to be a masochist to suffer through their inept bumbling. We're all proud of PNC Park (best stadium in the country)... and I go to games just for that... but the ownership has squandered the new stadium... and now the upcoming All-Star game. At first I thought it would embarrassing for Pittsburgh to host the All-Star game considering the Pirates are the worst team in baseball... but now I think it might shine a national spotlight on just how terrible Pirates ownership is... and maybe they'll cash out and sell it to a responsible ownership consortium.

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The Pirates have been very poorly run. They have used the "small market" thing as an excuse. The reason the Bucs are terrible has little to do with market size. The Pirates stink, because they have done a horrible job of scouting, drafting, and developing players. Even the rich teams can't win without "growing their own". The Yankees have lots of $$, but players such as Bernie Williams, Derrick Jeter, and Andy Petite, that formed the backbone of those 5 championship teams were home grown. The Braves have money, but they have produced their own stars as well. (Chipper and Andruw Jones for example). For a team that can't sign big bucks free agents, a productive farm system is essential. Since Barry Bonds came up in 1986, what top players have come up through the Pirates system? Aramis Ramirez, and Jason Kendall (who spent most of his career in Pittsburgh anyway).

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I think you can add Jason Schmidt of the Giants to that list, herodotus..... he came through the Pirates farm system, didn't he? Of course, he was shipped out of Pittsburgh right before he became a star.

I can only imagine the excitement in Pittsburgh... if we were to have even a mediocre team... instead of pathetic... a team that could compete and keep the fans interested for awhile... a team that could just reach 500!

The fans come out in droves as it is... to support lousy baseball. The 90 loss Pirates had better attendence last year than the Cleveland Indians, who were in playoff contention until the final weekend. If the Pirates could put a respectable product on the field for once... PNC Park would be jamming every night... it would be an incredible environment.

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^^I agree with those views, if Cuban can dome in or McClatchey actually turns this around, PNC Park and for that matter the whole northside would be rocking. I saw Smizik on SportsTnite with Bill Steigerwald (sp), lamenting about the same frustration. We have maybe the best fanbase outside NY and the best ballpark in the world. Steigerwald commented to a caller how he's getting sick of thinking what a Pirates team of yore could have had at PNC, saying he hated TRS for baseball and how a Stargell, Clemente or Bonds (during his Pirate days) could have showed the world what a true baseball stadium and city looked like every night.

Smizik countered that it is sad that under current ownership the Pirates will never have a "statue" player, that the Penguins and Steelers--teams suffering in the same "small market" both have players on thier rosters that will likely retire as Pittsburghers and if trends continue will one day grace the entrances to their respective teams house with a statue. The Pirates because of MLB's zany income system, and the lack of anyone willing to spend will continue to suffer until a Cuban like owner takes over.

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How is the popularity of the Pirates now a days? There last peak was back when Bonds and Bonilla played was it not?

As others have mentioned, attendance is doing extremely well considering the ineptitude by the team in the last 7 seasons (1997 and 1999 the Pirates were in on the race till the final week though they finished slightly below .500) so all this "14th year of losing" isn't exactly a reflection of competivness.

The last peak was about 1997 or 1999 as far as being in a pennant race, but the real glory days was the decade every real Pittsburgher dreams of living through again . . . the 1970's, 2 World Series and 6 playoff appearances with almost 10 pennant races.

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its too bad Cuban is still so bitter about not making the JV basketball team at Mt. Lebo...that's what's preventing him from investing in Pittsburgh...very odd grudge to have

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Short touches: PNC Park is the new Wrigley, and the Bucs are the new Cubs. You put one --even just one-- contending baseball team that's playoff bound (even wild-card) inside of Pittsburgh's 21st Century 'gem'; the proverbial "roof" gets blown off!

You could draw 3 million with a winner there (you just need to spend some additional cash while putting luxury tax revenues back into the team) - Mark Cuban knows this, McNutting Inc. doesn't. He will own this team soon, and he may even have a stake in with whoever Le Magnifique sells the Penguins to, all the while.

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SEASON TEAM LEAGUE W L PCT GB ATTENDANCE

2005 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 67 95 .414 33.0 1,817,245

2004 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 72 89 .447 32.5 1,583,036

2003 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 75 87 .463 13.0 1,636,752

2002 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 72 89 .447 24.5 1,784,970

2001 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 62 100 .383 31.0 2,435,867

2000 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 69 93 .426 26.0 1,748,908

1999 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 78 83 .484 18.5 1,638,023

1998 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 69 93 .426 33.0 1,560,950

1997 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 79 83 .488 5.0 1,657,022

1996 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 73 89 .451 15.0 1,332,150

1995 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 58 86 .403 27.0 905,517

1994 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 53 61 .465 13.0 1,222,520

1993 Pittsburgh Pirates National League 75 87 .463 22.0 1,650,593

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The Pirates have been very poorly run. They have used the "small market" thing as an excuse. The reason the Bucs are terrible has little to do with market size. The Pirates stink, because they have done a horrible job of scouting, drafting, and developing players. Even the rich teams can't win without "growing their own". The Yankees have lots of $$, but players such as Bernie Williams, Derrick Jeter, and Andy Petite, that formed the backbone of those 5 championship teams were home grown. The Braves have money, but they have produced their own stars as well. (Chipper and Andruw Jones for example). For a team that can't sign big bucks free agents, a productive farm system is essential. Since Barry Bonds came up in 1986, what top players have come up through the Pirates system? Aramis Ramirez, and Jason Kendall (who spent most of his career in Pittsburgh anyway).

I disagree with the small market being an excuse. Sadly it's a fact, and unless baseball gets revenue sharing it will not change. The Pirates have historically been one of the best teams at bringing up talent over the years. The problem is when these great players they've developed are ready for new contracts the Pirates can't afford them and they go somewhere else. This really started in the early 80's. It's sad when during spring training last year when every team has the goal of winning the penant the Pirates goal, stated by their manager, was to try to be .500.

PNC is fantastic though.

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I disagree, facilities man. Though being "small market" does put Pittsburgh at a disadvantage compared to New York, Boston, etc... the Pirates have used the fact that they are small market as an excuse to not even try to compete. No other small market team has suffered 14 consecutive losing seasons like the Pirates have. Many small market teams have even managed to compete at a high level... like the Cleveland Indians.

It is a myth that the Pirates have been "one of the best teams" at growing talent in the farm system. Many of their first round picks have turned out to be busts. The used the No. 1 overall pick in 2002 on Bryan Bullington... which now appears to have been a historic mistake. They could have had Prince Fielder instead, for example. The Pirates also left Chris Shelton unprotected in the Rule 5 draft a couple years ago while protecting players with limited potential. It was a puzzling move at the time, and the Detroit Tigers snatched Shelton from the Pirates. Shelton has 9 home runs for the Tigers in the month of April alone. The Pirates organization has been touting their promising young players in the farm system for years now... but most of them don't live up to their expectations. There have only been a couple cases where the Pirates haven't been able to keep players due to money constraints. The most famous example is Aramis Ramirez, who was dumped off on the Cubs. And this was mostly due to the ineptness of the front office. The "8th most profitable franchise" in baseball should easily be able to afford him... but the Pirates are run by greedy men who don't care about the how many wins the Pirates have... just that they keep generating profits.

Being small market puts the Pirates at a disadvantage, but it is not a full explanation for their historically sad run over the last decade and-a-half. The Pirates have been driven into the ground by inept and cheap ownership.

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I see your point on a few issues, but the lost players due to salary started with Bonds and Bonilla. I think we'll just agree to disagree on this one.

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Sally Wiggin over at Channel 4 WTAE had a big sit-down with McClatchey that aired Sunday Night at 11 (might have been at other times as well), he dismissed and scoffed at the fact that the Pirates were trying to lose, and were only interested in profits, cited the fact that it is only May and they are trying to season some youth at this point, said that he is VERY competitive and hate's losing and would love nothing more then to bring winning baseball to Pittsburgh saying the organization has increased payroll 25% since last year.

On the subject of Cuban, Wiggin asked point blank what would McClatchey say to him if they met, KM dodged some just saying he would say "hi" but after Wiggin pressed on if he would bring Cuban aboard or what would be an offer he couldn't refuse, KM said he wasn't focused on selling the team but making it a success and that any decision would have to be formed along with ON and the "board".

Although KM seems like a good guy, I do wish he would at the very least partner with MC and start winning games IN STYLE over on Mazeroski Way.

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