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Red Sox

iPhone 3GS Video & Camera Demo: Using

Oh how technology and digital media have advanced. Below is a video demonstration:

- capturing an HD broadcast of a live Red Sox game (streamed from, through my computer, and onto the television) - the video was shot on the iPhone 3GS's new video capture - and uploaded to Youtube wirelessly via the iPhone... in less than 30 seconds

On the iPhone and the computer, the video quality is far better than what is displayed on Youtube... but it is still far from HD and, despite TechCrunch's argument otherwise, products like the Flip Mino HD still have a role within the market (for now).

Also worth noting, the iPhone 3GS's camera is markedly better than the previous model's - both in focus, function and output. This photo also does a better job conveying the quality of's broadcast... a product I am so thoroughly impressed with that I chose to cancel my Comcast MLB Package subscription after five years:


David Ortiz on Facebook Shows Why Some Are Afraid of Social Media

Despite the big traffic and abilities to engage with consumers, some brands are still afraid of social media. Most grasp the power of social media (from blogging to widgets and from Facebook to Twitter), but many are still afraid of what user interactions can lead to.

On Twitter, those interactions are less scary because bad behaviors are often isolated and not tied to the brand itself. For instance, if Ashton Kutcher Twitters about his new movie, negative reactions are not directly connected to Ashton... in the world of blogging, it is akin to turning off your comments (activity can still occur - but not in your stream).

On Facebook, the commentary is directly associated... as David Ortiz and Reebok found out today. Ortiz used Facebook to promote his new auction supporting breast cancer. Within 5 minutes, he got the following reaction:

"Now that you are not doing steroids would you please hit the ball opposite the shift. .220 average is not cutting it for me."

It is unfortunate... but you wonder why fear still exists?


The NFL is Worth More than NBA + MLB - Average Franchise Worth $960 Million!

There are 123 professional sports teams across the NFL, MLB, NBA and NHL. The Dallas Cowboys are worth an estimated 1.5 billion dollars - ranking #1 - and the Nashville Predators are the least valuable team at $143 million. Some very interesting takeaways came from digging into the data: - The average NFL franchise is valued at $960 million. MLB's average is $475. The NBA average is $375. And NHL's average is $200.

- One way is to read this is that the NFL is worth more than Major League Baseball plus the National Basketball Association... amazing.

- The New York Yankees are the only non-NFL franchise in the top 27. The Mets, Red Sox and Dodgers are the only other MLB franchises in the top 40.

- In the NBA, the New York Knicks are the most valuable franchise despite being horrendous for the last several years... proof that market size and hometown are the key influencer. The top four teams (Knicks, Lakers, Bulls and Pistons) are four of the most storied, winning franchises.

- Baseball has the biggest disparity from top to bottom while the NFL - a league known for its parity - is pretty flat... so the least valuable team, the Atlanta Falcons, can still be competitive. This is also interesting because the Falcons have fallen terribly after losing Michael Vick - one of the league's most marketable players.

- The Toronto Maple Leafs are the most valuable NHL franchise and rank 57th overall at $413 million. That's over two times the league average.

- The Boston Red Sox, Celtics and Bruins are worth 1.45 billion combined... less than the Dallas Cowboys.

The 50 Most Valuable Sports Franchises

Rank Team Current Value 1 ($mil) 1 Dallas Cowboys 1,500 2 Washington Redskins 1,467 3 New York Yankees 1,306 4 New England Patriots 1,199 5 Houston Texans 1,056 6 Philadelphia Eagles 1,052 7 Denver Broncos 994 8 Chicago Bears 984 9 New York Giants 974 10 Cleveland Browns 969 11 New York Jets 967 12 Baltimore Ravens 965 13 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 963 14 Kansas City Chiefs 960 15 Carolina Panthers 956 16 Miami Dolphins 942 17 Pittsburgh Steelers 929 18 Green Bay Packers 927 19 Tennessee Titans 922 20 Seattle Seahawks 921 21 Cincinnati Bengals 912 22 Indianapolis Colts 911 23 St Louis Rams 908 24 Arizona Cardinals 888 25 Detroit Lions 870 26 New Orleans Saints 854 27 San Diego Chargers 826 28 New York Mets 824 29 Buffalo Bills 821 30 Boston Red Sox 816 31 Oakland Raiders 812 32 Jacksonville Jaguars 811 33 San Francisco 49ers 799 34 Atlanta Falcons 796 35 Minnesota Vikings 782 36 Los Angeles Dodgers 694 37 Chicago Cubs 642 38 New York Knicks 608 39 Los Angeles Lakers 560 40 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 500 41 Chicago Bulls 500 42 Atlanta Braves 497 43 San Francisco Giants 494 44 St Louis Cardinals 484 45 Philadelphia Phillies 481 46 Detroit Pistons 477 47 Seattle Mariners 466 48 Houston Astros 463 49 Houston Rockets 462 50 Dallas Mavericks 461

The NBA's Most Valuable Teams

The NFL's Most Valuable Teams

The MLB's Most Valuable Teams

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Major League Baseball's Economy 2.0 (Follow Up)

This is the first of two brief follow up posts (I was going to label them "Part II's" but they really aren't thorough enough to qualify...).

I wrote about the shifting economy in Major League Baseball and how deals are shifting towards younger players with longer, more reasonable deals. ESPN's Buster Olney (one of the reason's I'm a paid Insider subscriber) had a terrific article today. Olney opened by reinforcing my premise:

... Everything that happens seems to reinforce two essential hypotheses. No. 1: You almost never realize anything close to equal return in signing veteran players to long-term contracts. No. 2: The perceived value of young players keeps rising and rising and rising.

And then he added insights that I never could:

The industry trend, as we have seen, has been toward player development, toward drafting and shaping young players and eschewing big-money deals, and nothing that has happened this year has changed that. Some executives already have come to strongly believe the following:

• By the end of Miguel Cabrera's contract with Detroit, his $152.3 million deal will be viewed as a major mistake. • Over the duration of [Johan] Santana's contract, he will not be the kind of pitcher that the Mets paid for.

A couple things that strike me about this:

1) I love the use of the word "industry". That's what it is. And the dollars are large enough to support it.

2) Neither Cabrera's nor Santana's contracts were widely second-guessed in the off-seasons... in fact, many analysts lauded the deals.

3) The "collision course" between big veteran deals and youth extensions has happened seemingly instantly. The result is likely a very different trade deadline (now a few weeks away) and off-season free agency. Players like CC Sabathia and Mark Texiera turned down monster contracts in the hopes of getting $200m plus this off-season... those deals likely won't happen and may be well off.

All of this, in my opinion, is good for the baseball. Keeping an open-'marketplace' in tact, baseball is going to see small market teams effectively compete and to build for long-term success. Meanwhile, if the economic standards indeed shifts, there will be major consequences for striking major deals that don't work... which is a good thing.

MLB Economics 2.0 -According to Ryan Braun, Hanley Ramirez, Troy Tulowitzki and Evan Logoria

In the last few weeks, the economics of Major League Baseball (MLB) has been rewritten in a way that would make Money Ball's Billy Beane proud. MLB has seen an influx of very talented, very young players (under 27) - and general managers are forced to ask themselves whether to lock them up to big contracts now... or have them hit the open market and potentially sign far bigger deals. The players are forced to ask themselves whether to sign long-term contracts now or continue earning minimum level salaries ($100,000s / yr) until they hit the open market. It's a fascinating time for baseball.

Just a few months ago, a flurry of massive free agent deals were signed: Alex Rodriguez (32 years old): $275m / 10 years Mariano Rivera (38): $45m / 3 Mike Lowell (34): $37.5m / 3 Jose Guillen (32): $32m / 3 Francisco Corderro (33): $46m / 4 Aaron Rowand (30): $60m / 5 Torii Hunter (32): $90m / 5 Jorge Posada (36): $52m / 4

These are all enormous deals for players that will likely decline noticeably towards the end of the contracts. So while the numbers might make sense for the first part of the contract, I assure you that Jorge Posada will not be worth $13m / year when he's 39 or 40. But when a talented player hits the open market, the bidding puts *everything* in his control. Just ask Johnny Damon, Eric Gagne, Barry Zito and others...

So four teams from four non-major markets have started a new economic wave by signing their own talent to long-terms deals that are favorable for both the player and the team. The Milwaukee Brewers, Colorado Rockies, Florida Marlins and Tampa Bay Rays ALL say their talent leave to major market teams able to pay their players major dollars. To protect themselves, they paid their players handsomely (but far less than the average open-market contract) but locked them into long deals with team options for an additional 1-3 years. Those players are all in their young 20s and have yet to hit a major payday (despite making $100,000s / year). So the clubs are able to secure the future at reasonable rates (should these players be even close to top talent) and the players are able to land deals that will pay them very well... and potentially still enable them to hit the open market and fetch the big dollars:

Player Total Contract Contract / Year Age Years Ryan Braun, LF $45,000,000 $5,625,000 24 8 Hanley Ramirez,SS $70,000,000 $11,666,667 25 6 Troy Tulowitzki, SS $31,000,000 $5,166,667 24 6 Evan Longoria, 3B $17,500,000 $2,916,667 23 6

And soon enough you'll see the Red Sox do the same with Papelbon, Pedroia, Jon Lester, Bucholtz, and Ellsbury. The Yankees will sign Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes, and Ian Kennedy (they already signed Robinson Cano). The Mets have tied up Jose Reyes and David Wright.

Even big-market teams like the Red Sox, Mets, Yankees, Tigers, etc understand that you'd rather gamble on upside than on downside... especially when signing people on the downturn of their career can be more expensive.

And it hasn't been proven that it's easier to predict success for veteran players. A couple examples based on recent memory:

- Johnny Damon and Pedro Martinez were signed to long contracts by the Yankees and Mets respectively. Neither played as well as their Red Sox days nor has remained healthy (both are aging as well).

- Andruw Jones signed a monster contract with the Dodgers this year ($36m / 2 years). He's been horrible.

- Eric Gagne got $10m this season after hitting the open market. He leads baseball in blown saves and has relinquished his role as closer.

- Jorge Posada got big money and a four year contract from the Yankees. He's spent most of the year on the DL - and I can't imagine it will get better as he approaches 40.

Player Total Contract Contract / Year Age Years Ryan Braun, LF $45,000,000 $5,625,000 24 8 Hanley Ramirez,SS $70,000,000 $11,666,667 25 6 Troy Tulowitzki, SS $31,000,000 $5,166,667 24 6 Evan Longoria, 3B $17,500,000 $2,916,667 23 6 David Riske, RP $13,000,000 $4,333,333 31 3 Mariano Rivera, RP $45,000,000 $15,000,000 38 3 Alex Rodriguez, 3B $275,000,000 $27,500,000 32 10 Kenny Rogers, SP $8,000,000 $8,000,000 43 1 Aaron Rowand, CF $60,000,000 $12,000,000 30 5 Johan Santana, SP $137,500,000 $22,916,667 29 6 Carlos Silva, SP $48,000,000 $12,000,000 29 4 Luis Castillo, 2B $25,000,000 $6,250,000 32 4 Francisco Cordero, RP $46,000,000 $11,500,000 33 4 Octavio Dotel, RP $11,000,000 $5,500,000 34 2 Keith Foulke, RP $7,000,000 $7,000,000 35 1 Eric Gagne, RP $10,000,000 $10,000,000 32 1 Tom Glavine, SP $8,000,000 $8,000,000 42 1 Jose Guillen, RF $36,000,000 $12,000,000 32 3 Torii Hunter, CF $90,000,000 $18,000,000 32 5 Geoff Jenkins, RF $13,000,000 $6,500,000 33 2 Andruw Jones, CF $36,200,000 $18,100,000 31 2 Scott Linebrink, RP $19,000,000 $4,750,000 31 4 Mike Lowell, 3B $37,500,000 $12,500,000 34 3 Kazuo Matsui, 2B $16,500,000 $5,500,000 32 3