generic orlistat 120mg harga fluconazole accutane lawsuit settlements ibs cheap orilstat uk murata sacco arava side effects leflunomide prescribing cytotec in dubai buy zenegra online reputable viagra sellers pharmacie de garde bruxelles 1000 stilnox cr 12.5mg bioxetin pregnant altace side effects hair loss aspirin vs ibuprofen for inflammation cialis pro dosage how much is cialis with insurance bactrim ds onlineno rx canada and uk hydrodiuril manufacturers plavix and generic name buy cheap viagra nasonex nasal spray side effects hyperactivity cialis que es diamox side effects confusion premarin withoutprescription parafortan 500 mg naproxen viamedic complaints board augmentin and alcohol doses generic dutasteride online lortab 7.5 hydrocodone acetaminophen zofran causing birth defects 7 day prednisone pack revatio 20 mg tablets in los angeles ca normal digoxin toxicity level glipizide medication dose viagra 100mg tabs order online cheap levitra for sale cialis samples without prescrpition escitalopram customer reviews mercury drug store product list letrozole infertility 5mg canadien clinic sulfa chloroquine autophagy thuoc amoxicillin tri gi provigil vs nuvigil reviews piroxicam medication for cats medrol dose pack instructions spanish ketorolac tromethamine injection usp pramipexole for bodybuilding pletal medication classification xenical orlistat 120mg price trileptal side effects warnings xanax overdose death benzodiazepines salbutamol nebulizer drug study generic cialis free sample malaseb dog shampoo ingredients hydroxyzine pam 50mg buy pharma meds levitra online amex epogen side effects in dogs 10 mg doxycycline ivermectin scabies dosage comprar viagra por internet vigora hindi finpecia tablets cipla temovate scalp application to date mexico pharmacy online no prescription levitra 40 mg samples erythromycin purchase coumadin levels in blood elimite lotion for scabies norvasc samples advantage sales and marketing jet naproxen medication for back pain xerograx capsulas de canela primox muscle men genital herpes cefixime trihydrate molecular weight where to purchase virectin in stores liquid cialis does it work cholesterol numbers mean unisom for morning sickness dosage loyang primary school xenical orlistat 120mg reviewsxerograx hydrea medication action medrol 4mg dosepak side effects 5 mg cialis canada nizoral a d shampoo buy levitra de como y celisborrar x mirtazapine 30 mg generic viagra levitra buy panic meds now methocarbamol without a prescription decadron steroid ointment contrave diet pills approved by fda misotrol no prescription viagra vs cialis vs levitra pills blycolin groep s captopril 50 mg what is it for tretinoin 0.05 buy diane ladd imdb where to buy ed pills online where to buy inhalers finpecia 1mg finasteride dosage for hair growth milnacipran generic cialis zyvoxid price of silver apcalis sx 20mg jelly albutral with no script cozaar medicine side effects generic viagra for sale in usa overseas rx drug stores augmentin para que sirve buy serta mattress miami keftab patent medicine series ee where can i buy tulasi plant in uk salzarex tramadol capsules 100 unisom sleep tabs brand levitra online pharmacy lotemax gel coupon walmart seroflo inhaler 125 prescription free cialis zetia medication information epanutin injection sites betnesol nose drops etodolac 300 mg for dogs wholesale alli orlistat from india no prescription india diltiazem side effects hair loss advair 500 50 generic sildenafil citrate medications cardura dosage forms atenolol chlorthal 50 25 side effects cialias free sample mobic side effects mobic tablets abortion pills brands viagra canada tacrolimus online purchases can i buy clomid over the counter in uk 20mg cialis cheap haldol for nausea hospice epharmacy online cardinal bank increasing semen volume levitra and cialis packs ordering viagra how long does levitra last tylenol side effects in children amantadine poisoning on houseamerimedrx dilantin levels seizures oxybutynin er 10mg what is it used for kamagrafast uk national lottery rabeprazole sodium 20mg generic is prelox blue an equivalent to viagra buy strattera atomoxetine mexico online lynoral ingredients in beer extenze ingredients label diarex magnum 3 price macrodantin 100mg cap top 10 online phamacies medameds prices generic viagra blue pill abilify maintena injection anafranil 25mg tadalafil citrate research duphalac by abbott lupin suprax coupon thyroxine medication dosage metazole tablets for toddlers obagi tretinoin ovral 28 information pastillas cytotec en dallas tx virectin ingredients in cigarettes sertralina 50 mg efectos secundarios sublingual nitroglycerin spray myambutol ethambutol mechanism india pharmacy risperidone spiriva side effects and glaucoma isotretinoin gel brand cialis cheap venlafaxine 75mg weight loss mesterolone bodybuilding exercises fucidin ointment progesterone suppositories side effects on fetus best natural viagra alternative aldactone for acne dosage propecia in bangkok lowest price for amitriptyline dove comprare cialis sicuro cials brand buy amatriptyline cheap mebendazole dosage for children viagra 100mg prices cialis ed trental 400mg pentoxifylline rumafen gelatin paxil canada pharmacy no perscription requip side effects ropinirole what is colcrys side effects ornidazole dispersible tablets meaning overnight viagra oders dynamogen ampoules led how to get viagra in tokyo reductil 15mg amazon zentel medicine tablets azulfidine sulfasalazine for dogs medication levofloxacin 500 mg orally ventolin dosage for nebulizer doxycycline side effects doxycycline 100mg fast shipping cialis daily pilexil capsulas de vibora tenormin medication atenolol what is it for metallica through the never what was in the bag canadian pharmacy universities buy viagra professional online nitroglycerin ointment buy zyvox coupon with insurance zoloft medication depression amoxicillin side effects in dogs advair from mexico ezetimibe 10mg simvastatin 20mg atomoxetine costs 50 mg minocycline side effects antibiotic for dogs caverta 50 ranbaxy lesofat vs xenical diet urginal efectos secundarios paxil side effects arthritis fluoxitine without a prescription ranigast cena advantage auto sales conway sc where can i buy levoxyl fast zofran dosage for children 4mg ventolin nebules 2.5 mg donde puedo comprar lexapro en canada microcidal definition secure tabs oregon state rio rico pharmacy canadian rx net cialis soft aus europa get plavix fast without prescription fentanyl pain patch withdrawal progynova 2 mg in ivf online pharmacy mexico effexor baytril dogs antibiotic drug cheap oral jelly espn advertisements viagra regenon prospect in romana traducere mexican care pharmacy abilify patient assistance program forms generic sildenafil citrate for sale viamax sensitive desire reviews rogaine for eyebrows minoxidil sunrise tadalafil pills levitra germany priligy liposafe testimonials for business yagara fish is requip 1 safe to use diclofenac potassium 50mg tablets uses pilocarpine drug action berifen 100 mg tramadol propecia without a prescription aprovel irbesartan drugs hydroxyzine hcl 25 mg tablet over the counter fosamax dosage strength daily active use brand viagra canadian pharmacy drugs comparable to abilify canada prescriptions online prices onadron ampullary estrace vaginal cream buy cheap floxin otic solution 0 3 month dresses inflamacion de prostata sintomas dosage of lesofat buy viagra vs cialis vs levitra can you inject buspar casodex side effects bicalutamide prostate allopurinol 100mg tablets pictures novolog patient assistance program application tadacip 20 best price propecia online canada benadryl dosage for infants in ml prodotto 91 acquista vardenafil cialis stripes paypal viagra no prescriptions needed benadryl ingredients children plavix patient assistance application medrol side effects when stopping mebendazole vermox pinworms viagra for sale in ontairio canada ativan half life dose prozac dosage medication budesonide drug for horses duvadilan australia lipitor and grapefruit juice interaction advantage car rental reviews prednisolone generic name catafast sachets favors buy accutane from canada los algodones pharmacies price list combivent respimat inhaler dosage increasing sperm count in dogs www pfizer viagra 100mg price amsterdam pharmacy tiajuana starcef capsule endoscopy cockapoo puppies for sale in california buy viagra with debit card 59 buy clomid steroid online uk natural viagra over the counter sirius radio viagra add proscar side effects finasteride glucophage xr vs glucophageglucotrol chlamydia trachomatis bacteria xix chat kosovarja fluoxetine side effects antidepressants valium and alcohol overdose how much low price viagra pills for sale nuflor no prescription legal pain pills online digoxina 0.075 lexapro weight loss after stopping inderal for anxiety dose optum rx formulary medco cialis orlistat 120mg capsules canada buy cafergot suppositories how effective is generic cialis prednisone with no prescription vicodin strengths drug cardizem cd 180 mg tricilest uk yahoo clenbuterol weight loss results forum cialis a vendre montreal procalisx ingredients in meth arthrotec 50 mg side effects where to buy diclofenac cheap online viagra prozac without prescription trimetabol solution definition cabaser 1mg xanax secure pharmacy ordering where to buy zoloft 25 zyprexa for anxiety viagras wikipedia nartea rodica popescu mavidol ketorolaco tramadol online soloxine cialis soft 120 pills ritalin la generic cialis overnight flomaxtra australia pharmacy technician letter website nymphomax pills in india metformin pills from asia synthroid without prescription cardura dosage and side effects oracef 250mg diphenhydramine cefabiot cefuroxima abilify bipolar side effects doxycycline 100mg prices flagyl overnight no prescription effexor xr with no rx sildenafil andros doxycap antibiotics and alcohol levitra 20 mg impotence remedies buy ciprofloxacin 500mg online in uk metoprolol succinate er 50mg viagra 25mm generica frumil tabs for sweet glucophage 500mg online diclofenac 75mg pain costo orlistat generico canadian pharmacy cheap amoxil midamor drug class what is cyrux misoprostol arthritis pain relief cream rimonabant drug interactions oxybutynin chloride buy diflucan online overnight viagra en gotas para hombres clavamox side effects berifen 100mg tadalafil 20 mg germany buy sildenafil citrate 100mg online clindamycin side effects in cats tinidazole 500mg side effects buy generic viagra online usa keflex for uti ampicilina 500 mg levamisole dewormer tablets epratenz doxieeprex garlic shrimp recipes with rice alli tablets online cheap promethizine without prescription zanaflex overdose story topamax for migraines topiramate neurocet availability definition laxifen dosis de levotiroxina can you buy virectin in stores garlic shrimp recipe panlasang pinoy baristanet kids calendar bactroban no prescription dutasteride or finasteride side effects albenza treatment for tapeworms keftab inforum cialis non prescription needed usa leconfield wines til flexeril side effects constipation cardinal health jobs in dublin ohio medicine for sale in canada sildenafil cialis billig kaufen ohne rezept buy cipla products trusted rx place rhinathiol promethazine side effects xenical 20mg pulmicort flexhaler 180 mcg instructions benemid probenecid and penicillin moduretic generic buy zithromax online no per medicine in two days no prescription viagra para mujer levitra online reviews diclobru instructions amlodipine besylate 2.5mg images clenbuterol for sale in mexico floxin for sale advair diskus side effects free viagra samples in canada drug similar to metformin prometrium 200 mg and ivf allpills pharmacy times buy xanical online no script lincocin injection side effects baristanet bloomfield nj epanutin treatment for eczema classification of ampicillin euroclinix hasselt sifrol pramipexole side effects cialis generic non prescription levaquin antibiotic levofloxacin side effects cheap viagra mastercard temovate scalp application for employment compare viagra to cialis and levitra best pharmacies in tijuana rimadyl long term side effects dogs aldactone spironolactone clomid twins disease definition symptoms eltroxin 0 1 mg equals how many mcg generic cialis 200mg pills lisinopril hctz 12 5 no persription prednisone black market are vigrx plus results permanent lorinol 10mg prednisone amantadine side effects on children casodex 50 mg price 1 mg prednisone no scrip dutasteride side effects periactin medication uses isoniazid toxicity and pyridoxine www to buy 100mg cialis tablets on line nolvadex for sale uk exelon corporation careers letrozole 2.5 mg side effects buy cialis online uk reviews baristanet montclair nj police station diclofenaco forte para que sirve ezetimibe simvastatin side effects cyclo progynova tablets ivf sildenafil in pakistan champix and pfizercheaprxchigualos entocort ec side effects enbrel 50 mg price pharma non prescription cialis accutane side effects isotretinoin cialis 20mg prix aciclovir tablets dosage vilches leon gto knife party cep paulinia where to buy orlistat tegretol 200mg doxycycline hyclate uses drug zyprexa relprevv deaths buy zoloft uk nizagara tablets 100 cabgolin cabergoline bodybuilding birth control pills online store therapy for depression in men online pharmacy no prescription reviews amlodipine besylate 10mg norvasc alternative for malaseb wipes renew lialda savings card overstock drugstore levitra super active revies eutirox 25mcg fucidin cream treatment klonopin overnight delivery adipex p 37.5mg coupons pfizer pharmaceuticals stock podofilox gel where to buy mavidol tr dosage
Home Pete Toms LWIB: Sizing Up the State of the Toronto Blue Jays

Like Shoot to Thrill - An AC/DC Tribute on Facebook!

An authentic tribute of AC/DC that covers the best of the Bon Scott era and the best of Brian Johnson's material

Who's Online?

We have 860 guests online

Atom RSS

LWIB: Sizing Up the State of the Toronto Blue Jays PDF Print E-mail
User Rating: / 16
PoorBest 
Pete Toms Article Archive
Written by Pete Toms   
Tuesday, 13 December 2011 15:03

Last Week in Bizball by Pete Toms

Once upon a time, the Toronto Blue Jays won back-to-back World Series (92 & 93) and led MLB in player payroll (93 & 95) and attendance (89-93). Since the introduction of the expanded playoffs in 94, they are one of only 4 franchises (the others are the Royals, Pirates and Nationals) to not qualify for the postseason. What the hell happened?

The decline in the on and off field fortunes of the Blue Jays coincides with the '94 acquisition of - then franchise owner Labatts Breweries - by Belgian brewer Interbrew (now InBev). Interbrew proved to be a disinterested and neglectful owner of the baseball club. In 00, media conglomerate Rogers Communications Inc., (RCI) purchased the Blue Jays. It is widely believed that, although decidedly not a sports fan, the late Ted Rogers (former President & CEO) insisted that RCI purchase the Blue Jays out of loyalty to his native Toronto, rather than to bolster his company’s bottom line. During RCI’s decade plus ownership of the Blue Jays, big league player payroll has fluctuated from the bottom third of MLB to the middle ranks. It is not at all unusual that a franchise’s big league payroll fluctuates, as many small/mid market franchises employ a strategy of “cycling”. However, given that Toronto has the 4th largest population amongst MLB cities, behind NY, LA & Chicago (all host 2 MLB franchises), many Blue Jays fans have been frustrated that RCI has, not once, raised the Blue Jays’ big league payroll into the upper echelon of MLB. In other words, RCI has operated as a mid/small market owner while situated in a big market.

SELECT READ MORE TO SEE THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE

This current era of Blue Jays stewardship commenced in October 08 with the return of the President & CEO of their glory years, Paul Beeston. In October 09, Beeston dismissed GM JP Ricciardi and appointed then-asst GM Alex Anthopoulos to the position. Anthopoulos has engendered much good will amongst the Blue Jays faithful. The beginning of Anthopoulos’s “cycling up” plan was meeting Roy Halladay’s demand that he be traded to the Philadelphia Phillies. Subsequently, and seemingly miraculously, he ridded the club of the contracts of Alex Rios and Vernon Wells. After years of the Blue Jays skimping on the cost of acquiring amateur talent, he hired a raft of scouts and the franchise has recently been amongst MLB’s biggest spenders in both the international free agent market and the Rule 4 draft. He signed Jose Bautista and Ricky Romero, the club’s best position player and pitcher, to deals which don’t expire until the middle of this decade. A core of young veterans, Yunel Escobar, Colby Rasmus, Sergio Santos, Travis Snider, Adam Lind, Brandon Morrow and Brett Cecil, are “controllable” (not eligible for free agency) for the next handful of seasons. 3B Brett Lawrie, acquired by Anthopolous for Shaun Marcum, made his major league debut in Toronto last season and is likely a future All Star. Perhaps most promisingly, the Blue Jays farm system contains one of the best collection of prospects in MLB, particularly at the Double A level and below. To top it all off, Beeston has said repeatedly that when his GM is confident that adding expensive, veteran players to the mix is the final piece in vaulting the Blue Jays into the playoffs, RCI won’t hesitate to spend big. Add to that the addition of another Wild Card team to the AL, possibly this upcoming season but more likely in 13, and Blue Jays fans can realistically foresee meaningful September baseball in their city for the first time in almost 2 decades.

But LWIB, the message coming from Blue Jays management took an abrupt turn (or did it?). Going into, and during, the Winter Meetings, the baseball punditry reported and tweeted often that the Blue Jays had a lot of money to spend. The Blue Jays were frequently reported as serious suitors for both Prince Fielder and Yu Darvish (the reports persist, and may be valid). But we are astute enough to realize that clubs and agents manipulate the baseball press to influence the free agent market….so, take it for what you will. But what caused much consternation amongst the Toronto baseball press was Anthopoulos seemingly going out of his way to temper the expectations of Blue Jays fans in regards to future spending on big league payroll. Shi Davidi wrote that, “Last winter, during an event with the club’s season ticket holders, Beeston said he envisioned one day spending well into nine figures on payroll, a position he still stands by.” However, as Davidi reported, during a discussion with Toronto reporters concerning the acquisition of Sergio Santos, Anthopoulos surprised all when he communicated that Blue Jays fans should not assume that RCI will soon fund a big increase in big league payroll:

Yet there was something odd in hearing Anthopoulos go out of his way Tuesday to repeatedly talk about the financial "parameters" he must work within, and how his team’s ability to hike up its payroll has been "grossly exaggerated."

Anthopoulos could have left things on the trade for Santos – who is guaranteed US$7.5 million over the next three years and up to US$2.25 million more if all three of his club options for 2015-17 are declined – at another clever and fiscally responsible move, but he didn’t.

Instead, a perception was created that the Blue Jays – who will lose a chunk of money through changes to revenue sharing in the new collective bargaining agreement starting in 2013 – may be altering their spending plans for seasons to come.

Beeston responded to Anthopoulos’s comments, "We’re still capable of going to the US$120 million payroll once we start drawing the people," he said. "Once we start drawing the people means that we’re winning, right? The formula hasn’t changed."

A few days later, Jeff Blair wrote, “This was a week in which Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos had to defend himself against charges he’d called out the team’s fan base when he said increased attendance was a necessary precursor to a $120-million payroll, amending it to increased revenues, and telling a reporter at a morning scrum on Thursday he did not want to go over payroll “parameters” or “borders” any more but would rather focus on what he’s trying to do with the team. Nobody in Toronto seems to know any more what the chicken or egg is, let alone which comes first.”

Further fuelling the media speculation over the Blue Jays’ uncertain direction is their long-reported interest in Yu Darvish. During the season, Anthopoulos travelled to Japan to scout the pitcher. More recently, Beeston has made comments critical of the “posting process” which is unavoidable if the Blue Jays are to acquire Darvish. The obvious, and frequently asked question in Toronto, is why did Anthopoulos go to Japan if his boss was philosophically opposed to the “posting process”?

If there has been a very recent, and significant, change in RCI’s approach to operating the Blue Jays, is it a direct result of the new CBA? The initial concern in the Toronto baseball media about the impact of the new basic agreement focused on the limits it will impose on spending in both the Rule 4 draft and international free agent market. As already mentioned, the Blue Jays under Anthopoulos have been very aggressive in both. But LWIB Anthopoulos publicly acknowledged that the new CBA will result in the Blue Jays receiving less revenue sharing money. LWIB, Darren Rovell wrote, “The new deal, for the first time ever, disqualifies 15 markets from receiving initial revenue sharing dollars. They are: The Yankees, Mets, Red Sox, Cubs, White Sox, Phillies, Blue Jays, Nationals, Braves, Rangers, Astros, Giants and A's (assuming they build their new stadium).” However, the new CBA’s market disqualification revenue sharing program may help the Blue Jays more than it hurts them. Joel Sherman explained how it has taken the Blue Jays’ AL East rivals, the Yankees, out of this free agent market. Sherman also noted that it also, “…is designed to prevent big markets such as Toronto and Washington from receiving revenue sharing dollars,..”

None of us know for certain if LWIB saw a fundamental change in course by Blue Jays management and ownership. Perhaps the Blue Jays will sign one of, or both, Fielder and Darvish. But the uncertainty surrounding the Blue Jays is consistent with RCI’s inconsistent (disinterested?) approach to ownership of their baseball franchise. As mentioned, Ted Rogers reportedly bought the team out of civic duty but then proceeded to largely ignore the team up until his passing in December, 08. Within weeks of Rogers death, a swath of Blue Jays reporters were writing that “unnamed sources” (I have to assume from within RCI) were telling them that RCI wanted to sell the baseball franchise. Whether or not RCI failed to attract any interest in the franchise, or simply changed their mind, is unknown to me. The return of Beeston has marked a renewed commitment from RCI to the Blue Jays. Via the return of the red maple leaf to the Blue Jays uniforms and logo, affiliating with a minor league team in Vancouver, bringing back the “winter caravan”, partnering with Baseball Canada in summer baseball camps and, reportedly, affiliating with, and perhaps investing in, a Double A franchise to operate in Ottawa starting in 13, RCI is attempting to brand the Blue Jays as Canada’s, not just Toronto’s, MLB franchise. And there is evidence that fans are responding to the Blue Jays offerings. Blue Jays TV ratings were up 17% last season and year-over-year attendance was up approximately 12%. Beeston has also succeeded in securing greatly more dollars from ownership for player development. Live Blue Jays games were an integral part of last year’s launch of RCI’s 5th all sports channel, Sportsnet One. Some games were available exclusively on the new channel to entice RCI’s cable subscribers to pay for another channel. At the same time, the exclusivity of games on the new channel put pressure on other canadian cable providers to carry it. Last season, live Blue Jays games were at the centre of RCI’s rollout of their version of “TV Everywhere”. In other words, allowing authenticated RCI cable and mobile subscribers to view the live games over the internet and on their mobile devices.

But nobody has ever questioned that RCI’s ownership of the Blue Jays isn’t worth something to them. The Blue Jays provide valuable programming to RCI’s collection of all sports TV channels plus terrestrial radio stations and now to their internet and mobile subscribers. Televised Blue Jays games are available exclusively on RCI’s cable TV sports channels and RCI is the nation’s largest cable provider, most importantly, the dominant provider in Toronto. RCI owns the Rogers Centre, which serves as a corporate billboard in downtown Toronto. Whether or not the Blue Jays are a “profitable” asset to RCI is impossible to know, and maybe even irrelevant, given the fungibility of the money involved in corporate related party transactions. Not so long ago, there was fear within MLB that franchises owned by big media companies (Fox, Disney, Time Warner, Tribune Co.) would dominate on, and off, the field. That hasn’t happened. Today only 2 big media companies, Liberty Media is the other, own MLB franchises. Not coincidentally, Liberty Media, like RCI with the Blue Jays, has taken a very conservative approach to owning the Braves. Large publicly traded companies learned that pro sports ownership didn’t fit with their model. The revenues that these franchises generate are irregular and seasonal, a poor fit when investors and analysts are scrutinizing quarterly EBITDA. Revenues are greatly impacted by making, or missing, the playoffs, which, as fans know, is highly unpredictable. Corporate brands, like RCI, take a public beating when their pro sports team underperforms and disappoints. Simply, the teams got lost in a vast corporate culture where they only proved to be a nuisance. .

For better or worse, the Blue Jays and RCI will likely remain wedded. Like their counterparts in the US, Canadian cable/sat providers RCI, Bell and Quebecor are betting that controlling the rights to live sports programming is the key to preventing their subscribers from switching to OTT services. Ideally, RCI could rid themselves of the headache of owning the Blue Jays and the Rogers Centre (probably a bigger money pit) if they were certain they would continue to control the media rights. But there appears to be no wealthy Toronto baseball fan looking for a “vanity buy” (I don’t think Geddy Lee is THAT wealthy) plus playing in one of the last 2 multipurpose stadiums in MLB makes the Blue Jays an even less appealing asset, particularly minus the TV/digital rights. There are no viable markets to move to, and if there were, RCI would meet with a severe backlash from fans and media for selling the team to an American buyer.

Prior to LWIB, Blue Jays fans had plenty of reasons for optimism. After LWIB, we are left to wonder if the future of RCI and their baseball team is just more of the same.

You can follow me on Twitter @PeteToms


Pete Toms is senior writer for the Business of Sports Network, most notably, The Biz of Baseball. He looks forward to your comments and can be contacted through The Biz of Baseball.

Follow The Biz of Baseball on Twitter Twitter

FacebookFollow the Business of Sports Network on Facebook

 
 
Banner

Poll

Should MLB Force Jeffery Loria to Sell the Marlins?