2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Bryant's Disco Ball » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:42 pm

This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Andy » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:44 pm

squally1313 wrote:
Transmogrified Tiger wrote:
squally1313 wrote:I have no idea if any of this is accurate, but assuming it is, I found it pretty informative and pretty depressing on the motivations for the Cubs dropping payroll in 2020...though I guess the silver lining is that this article makes it seem like it would just be a one year dip.

https://www.bleachernation.com/cubs/201 ... x-in-2020/

No, this still does not mean we should trade Kris Bryant.


The tl;dr is that going over the tax for the 2nd straight year is more like a ~25 million cost than a ~5 million cost, and doing so for a 3rd straight year is upwards of 50 million.


"Putting it another way: The system in place makes it much cheaper for the Cubs to have a $207 million payroll in 2020 and then a $250 million payroll in 2021 than to have a $209 million payroll in 2020 and then a $211 million payroll in 2021. It’s an absurd extension of the way these penalties are structured, but it’s true."

Of course, the level of faith I have in the Ricketts actually consenting to go back over the luxury tax in 2021 (if this cockamamie scheme of theirs pays off in the first place) is basically horsefeathering zero.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby UMFan83 » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:46 pm

Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?


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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Andy » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:47 pm

Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?

I can't speak for everyone here, but I would assume most don't have a particular number in mind. The general idea, though (certainly my idea), is that some of the stuff that's been tossed around in order to get below whatever payroll ceiling the Ricketts have in mind, during a clear window of contention that you can't automatically assume will be repeated, is really really stupid. I understand not paying through the nose for Cole or Rendon, but there's no real reason the Cubs should be basically ignoring the possibility of signing anybody at all absent cost-slashing moves that will hurt the on-field product.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Transmogrified Tiger » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:48 pm

Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?


I would guess when this number is closer to zero than 9 digits.

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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Deeg » Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:59 pm

The contortions Brett is willing to go through to be a franchise apologist never fail to amaze me. You sometimes wonder if he literally is on the take.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Hairyducked Idiot » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:00 pm

What if we took a few years off competing, got our payroll down, but in doing so we focused on the farm system and the organization as a whole, so we could have a pipeline of young talent that will mature into prime age as Cubs. Then we never have to rebuild again. We could sustain our success.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Cubswin11 » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:04 pm

Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?

250-300 should be more than doable during a contention window for them, imo, with the info we have on what we think they make. Obviously they could and can spend more but talking about where they could go in an individual season and still not lose money that seems like the range.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby TomtheBombadil » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:07 pm

Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?


I have no answer to this question personally, a guess would be that teams like the Yankees/Dodgers/Cubs could easily handle a $300+ payroll, because it goes beyond payroll at this point. I want something more meaningful - like a minimum 50/50 total revenue split with the players any change in favor of the players, no more public funds or shady land deals for stadiums, no draft let alone an international one, and probably public executions of anyone involved in giving or taking public land and/or money so sports teams can have stadiums
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Thed Hoyerstein » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:13 pm

Transmogrified Tiger wrote:
Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?


I would guess when this number is closer to zero than 9 digits.



Have there been any recent reports as to the go-forward interest expense used to finance the team? Though that should be outside of baseball ops but I'm sure that the Ricketts would use that excuse.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby TomtheBombadil » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:16 pm

Hairyducked Idiot wrote:What if we took a few years off competing, got our payroll down, but in doing so we focused on the farm system and the organization as a whole, so we could have a pipeline of young talent that will mature into prime age as Cubs. Then we never have to rebuild again. We could sustain our success.


If you can count on sustainability, and from the sounds of payroll coming down it seems ultra sustainable, the Cubs really should consider this route. The thing is this FO has so little track record of developing talent since 2016 that it's hard to see these being the guys for the job. Does Andrew Friedman have another assistant out there? What would Friedman cost to lure away from the Dodgers?
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Bertz » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:18 pm

Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?


My assumption is that there are more costs than we give credit for in running the team, so their break even point is probably well south of $300M.

That being said there are two big caveats there:

1. They definitely pocketed a ton of money from 2012-2015, and haven't turned around and dipped back into that money. They'll point to the renovations but that leads to...
2. A lot of their costs are building up equity. So it's not *really* a loss even of it's not straight up liquid profit

So ultimately. I don't *really* care about where that break even point is.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Regular Show » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:22 pm

Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?


This is going to be a bad take and not popular, but I don't want the Cubs to morph into the old Steinbrenner's Yankees where we buy FAs every offseason and outspend every team. Like if Mark Cuban bought the team and allowed the Cubs to spend as much as they see fit and didn't care about making a profit...

On the one hand I'm happy the players are getting more money and all the revenue is being put back into the team, but I would hate winning that way. Like it's awesome if we outbid the Yankees for Cole, but I personally would kinda hate this team if we kept doing that and had a payroll over $300 million.

I'm fine with a team near the luxury tax with times going strategically over. I want the luxury tax line bumped WAY up in the next CBA discussion. Next year it will start at $208M and then goes up to $210M. I'm hoping it gets bumped up to $240M in the next CBA since teams treat it as almost a hard cap.

I hate the Yankees and I hate teams that buy their way to a championship (which I know the Cubs didn't do). They should always be in the top 3-4 in spending, but I don't want them to be #1 in spending except in strategic, special offseasons.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Cubswin11 » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:27 pm

Bertz wrote:
Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?


My assumption is that there are more costs than we give credit for in running the team, so their break even point is probably well south of $300M.

That being said there are two big caveats there:

1. They definitely pocketed a ton of money from 2012-2015, and haven't turned around and dipped back into that money. They'll point to the renovations but that leads to...
2. A lot of their costs are building up equity. So it's not *really* a loss even of it's not straight up liquid profit

So ultimately. I don't *really* care about where that break even point is.

Yeah there probably are more expenses than we know/give credit and the Cubs probably also have some of the higher expenses in MLB currently with the renovations, recentish purchase of the team, all the building/property acquisitions around the park and network. But like you said most of those costs are going towards assets gaining value/building equity. They get the interest, expense and depreciation write downs with doing all that too. They also got the BAMTECH money last year or the year before, did that minority share sell off a few years ago (forget what that money was used for) etc.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Sammy Sofa » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:30 pm

Regular Show wrote:I hate the Yankees and I hate teams that buy their way to a championship (which I know the Cubs didn't do).


No, that definitely was a huge part of what they did.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby TomtheBombadil » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:31 pm

Transmogrified Tiger wrote:


Wilder still is that I'm sure these numbers don't include things like profits from non-baseball events held in the increasingly often publicly funded stadiums (CFB games, concerts, etc) that go to the team, media rights revenues (which will go up with teams allowed to shop streaming rights regionally), tax exemptions...
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Regular Show » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:42 pm

Sammy Sofa wrote:
Regular Show wrote:I hate the Yankees and I hate teams that buy their way to a championship (which I know the Cubs didn't do).


No, that definitely was a huge part of what they did.


I disagree.

Yeah, we got Lester and we then got Heyward. Lol, Heyward didn't really contribute to the 2016 team so he doesn't count (in my mind).

Take his salary away and that Cubs team isn't that high in payroll in 2016. Like if Heyward suffered an injury at the beginning of the 2016 season and was done for the rest of year. You could say the Cubs spent a decent amount of money, but the players that actually contributed to winning a championship wasn't that high in total payroll amount. We traded Castro to sign Zobrist...

Like no one says the Cubs bought a championship in 2016 in the media or blogosphere except on White Sox' and Cardinals' message boards.

----

You don't "buy your way to a championship" if the players you spent money on create effectively replacement level value (0-1 WAR) in my mind. The other players on the team is what allowed you to win a championship and you spent poorly in FA.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Sammy Sofa » Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:49 pm

But it doesn't work that way; they still spent the money. One couldn't, IMO, in good conscience declare that a team that spent $150 million dollars didn't in part buy their way to victory. They went out and got Heyward, Lester, Lackey, Montero, Zobrist and Arrietta, whether by trade or signing, because they knew that had horsefeathers You Money.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Regular Show » Thu Dec 19, 2019 11:00 pm

Sammy Sofa wrote:But it doesn't work that way; they still spent the money. One couldn't, IMO, in good conscience declare that a team that spent $150 million dollars didn't in part buy their way to victory. They went out and got Heyward, Lester, Lackey, Montero, Zobrist and Arrietta, whether by trade or signing, because they knew that had horsefeathers You Money.


Okay, being able to spend money and add additions helped in part in winning a championship in 2016.

But they certainly didn't buy a championship in 2016 through FA. I almost wished they didn't sign Heyward or I should drop the almost part now. I wasn't here when that signing happened, but I wanted the Cubs to have an opt-out after the 3rd year (to go after Harper and/or in the event of a colossal collapse from Heyward). More teams need to do this, but that also probably means you don't get the FA...

For those megadeals that go 7-8 years it's just so dumb to not include a mutual opt-out clause IMO. Front load the deals or make the buyout really painful for opting-out (for the team), but MLB teams need to wise up on these mega contracts. Stanton is going to age poorly and that contract will get ugly very soon.
Last edited by Regular Show on Thu Dec 19, 2019 11:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Sammy Sofa » Thu Dec 19, 2019 11:06 pm

I mean, it just feels like it shifts the narrative to the idea that the Cubs did 2016 with nothing but a ragtag band of young go-getters who cost nothing but a song, but they were straight up playing a team in the WS who (relatively) ACTUALLY DID THAT by spending close to $90 million less than the Cubs did.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby ConstableRabbit » Thu Dec 19, 2019 11:39 pm

Transmogrified Tiger wrote:
Bryant's Disco Ball wrote:This is a difficult question because nobody really knows what the exact profit is that a team like the Cubs make after all the expenses, but what is a good guess as to what the payroll should be and one that would get people to go, 'OK, they spend enough.'

$300 million? $400 million?


I would guess when this number is closer to zero than 9 digits.


These are EBITDA numbers, though.
I: Do we know how much the debt servicing costs the Cubs every year? I thought I remembered it being ~$35m annually.
T: The Cubs likely pay taxes
D: They have depreciating assets but too difficult for me to mentally calc
A: Same

If you add the above to the total $20-25m Luxury Tax penalties Brett referenced you get closer to breakeven.

The Cubs EBITDA was $87m and the White Sox was $76m? That is insane. To me, this implies that either the interest payments on the team's debt is higher than we thought or the non-payroll investments the Cubs put into the team are higher than we thought.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Cubswin11 » Thu Dec 19, 2019 11:44 pm

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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Gilby » Fri Dec 20, 2019 12:00 am

A little more foresight by ownership/Theo would've been nice, specifically before inking those Chatwood and Kimbrel deals. Like if this isn't just about Marquee being a flop, how was this not handled better before ending up with the plan of trading Bryant.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Backtobanks » Fri Dec 20, 2019 12:01 am

Sammy Sofa wrote:
Regular Show wrote:I hate the Yankees and I hate teams that buy their way to a championship (which I know the Cubs didn't do).


No, that definitely was a huge part of what they did.


In the last 4 years the Cubs payroll was 12% over the Cards, 88% over the Brewers, 74% over the Reds, and 102% over the Pirates. We were the Yankees of the NL Central.
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Re: 2019-20 Offseason Rumors/General Chit-Chat

Postby Transmogrified Tiger » Fri Dec 20, 2019 12:25 am

Gilby wrote:A little more foresight by ownership/Theo would've been nice, specifically before inking those Chatwood and Kimbrel deals. Like if this isn't just about Marquee being a flop, how was this not handled better before ending up with the plan of trading Bryant.


Exactly, the CBA has been in place for 3 years, the consequences of spending from that perspective are not a surprise. So either we have to believe that Theo was confident that the team would be so good that they'd be fine just taking an offseason to trim payroll(even as late as *this June* when he committed 37 million to Kimbrel), or ownership pulled the rug out from under them.
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