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Thor'sLinks: Call Arte The 8th Man

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It's good to be Arte Moreno, who made a $180 million purchase of the Angels in 2003 and now has the 8th most valuable franchise in MLB.

Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Forbes has released its annual list of MLB franchise valuations. It's currently a click-hell laden slog that will get re-keyed into simple text format soon. I'll do it myself if I cannot find something far more accessible in a day or so. of course, we have the Yankees, Dodgers, Red Sox and Giants at the top. The Angels come in at 8th place, valued at $1.34 billion. That is the same 8th place as last year, but $40 million more in equity in spite of the image/organizational chaos of 2015 and the continuing decline in attendance. And that is not counting the author's estimation that MLBAM should add another $200 million to the value of every fanchise (that's on page 2).

Let's look at this another way. In May of 2003 the S&P 500 was at $944.30. Yesterday it was at $2,036.71. That's (roughly) an increase of 116%. Close to 6% growth compounded year over year, which would make any retiree pleased. Sure, it should have been more. But the 2008 market collapse driven by the home mortgage fiasco took a large bite out of all markets. All, that is, except Major League Baseball. Arte has seen a rise in that same time, in spite of the global economic collapse, of 644%. He is up $1.16 billion. That's closer to 15.4% growth compounded year-over-year in that same time. If I had gotten that on my 401k I would retire in the morning.

Arte's net worth last year was estimated at $1.44 billion, but we can expect that to rise with his franchise. We still don't have a final player payroll accounting for 2016 so we don't know whether Arte's lux tax would have been more than $2 or $3 million this year. But when we DO get that accounting, this latest franchise valuation is only going to add fuel to the fire.

Have some Keep-the-Masses-Happy-with-the-Cheap-Beer-legacy-Links:

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Everywhere In Baseball

Go with God, Joe: Forget the Arizona Diamondbacks broadcasting linkage. For us oldsters Joe Garagiola, Sr.'s real legacy was as a gentle conduit into the inner world of Major League Baseball during his years as the announcer (partnered with Tony Kubek) on NBC's Game of the Week. Sorry to see you go, Joe. Baseball is poorer in spirit and wit with your passing..........

Rule This: You should all know by now how much I adore taking Rule 5 draftees and locking away roster slots off the 25-man for a season of inflexibility. See Featherston, Taylor. circa 2015. Well, this Spring we have TWO Rule 5 guys, Ji-Man Choi and Deolis Guerra. Neither are working out. Guerra is carrying an ERA this spring of 8.22 with a WHIP of 1.83 in 7 appearances. Choi leads the team in strikeouts with 13, his OBP is a feeble .321 and his Slugging Percentage is an anemic .306. For a guy who would field 1B, that's a shit show............

What a Waste: Apparently, the scribes up north are in wannabe mode, envious of the meme in Anaheim about wasting the prime years of their superstar. Of course, the Dodgers are pouring billions into their effort to deliver championship quality baseball during the Kershaw reign, so how this qualifies as some kind of waste is beyond me. They are trying their asses off, but baseball remains a game of failure. Meanwhile, once again for the masses, Mike Trout's prime years are still in our future. Lie, when he is 27. That he has been around a while already is a function of how brilliant he has been since a very young age...........

Breathing the Ethier: And to think, some folks considered the potential of Andre Ethier as the possible solution to our LF issue. Consider that notion to be yet another bullet dodged..........

Robo Umps: Don't just believe me. Take it from Commissioner Rob Manfred: The computerized shit you see on television is "an approximation" of the strike zone box. There are still serious technology limitations that are pushing the computerized ball/strike calling out into the future. Manfred is not against it on principle, but MLB doesn't yet have to contend with pushback from purists and umpires because, quite simply, the shit ain't real yet. Stop, for now, we can all whining about the need to switch to Robo Umps based on those cartoons we are being fed while we watch our TV screens............

Coming Home: It turns out that getting into Cuba was far easier than getting back out of Cuba. The Rays were stuck on the tarmac in Havana for 7 hours when the plane used for their charter suffered mechanical problems. Their charter service had to fly down a replacement jet to pick them all up. My guess is that they also had to fly down their own mechanics and spare parts to get their particular craft off the ground. I hope that while they waited they all had access to some of that superior rum they distill down there...........

ARod: Alex Rodriguez is telling folks that he will retire after the 2017 season. That would be after his 41-year old season, which would be his 23rd as a Major Leaguer. It's also the final year of his $275 million contract, and nobody is going to want to pay him according to that $20 million salary to which he has grown accustomed. Time to start taking early Social Security and live off the wealth of his new girlfriend. New York tabloid writers are going to need to find somebody else to kick around for a living...........

Simply Rich: Daniel Norris is a rich guy, getting a contract fresh out of high school with the Blue Jays that included a $2million signing bonus. Daniel Norris is also a pretty simple dude and likes to keep it that way. In the offseasons, Norris lives his childhood dream of living in a VW van on WalMart parking lots..........I don't suppose Norris is the kind of guy who would hang around Yoan Moncada much..........

Supply & Demand: Small market, my ass. The Kansas City Royals are demonstrating quite fiercely that it is eminently possible to generate serious revenue in their neck of the woods. Win and people will come. And they will come in such numbers that they will drive up tickets prices to the point where yours will be the highest for Opening Day in all of Major League Baseball. Buy a shitload. Like, three times that of the Angels........Not that winning a World Series means anything anywhere else in your state, however..........

Flipping Out: By the way, now that the Goose Gossage fist-shaking against modern players has died down, allow me to share with you how players in even Gossage's day could pimp their home runs pretty damned well..........

Ill Logic: A salesman and a lawyer walk into a bar...Arte gives each a free beer and they team up to give us a marketing pitch for MLB.TV that only a fool could enjoy. As I keep rooting around the web for links I am forced to read, over and over again, this info-graphic promoting MLB.TV:

Dont-Miss-a-Pitch

Note the tag-line of "Don't miss a pitch". Then click on the FAQs link and expand the section concerning the MLB Blackout Policy and compare that "don't miss a pitch" promise from purchasing MLB.TV to the real world:

MLB-Blackout-Policy

Yeah. We all know it. And I know we all know it. Buy MLB.TV and use it to watch everybody other than your own team. But how in the hell does MLB keep getting away with their promotional promise of getting to watch EVERY PITCH??? If I didn't have to read that a few times every day I might be less sensitive to it. But after all this time I do admit to being pretty fed up..............This is kind of topical since MLB is interjecting themselves into the dispute between TWC and multiple SoCal carriers over the cost of subsidizing the Dodgers' bid to buy a title..........

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