Blue Jays Playoff Success May Not Bring Much Revenue
By Shaun Doyle
Show me the money! That’s kind of what we were told way back when from Blue Jays’ President, Paul Beeston. We were told that if we support the team, buy tickets, merchandise and watch on TV, the money will be there when the club needed it. And, this year the fan base has done that. We’ve shown up and filled the stadium, we’ve bought jerseys, hats and shirzees. The belief is that playing playoff baseball would further feed the cash cow this club has become. But, according to Paige Ellis of BNN (via Globe and Mail), business might be booming, but it wouldn’t really amount to a whole lot for Rogers.
First of all, you have to imagine that the Blue Jays go all the way and win the World Series. That shouldn’t be that hard. We’ve only been dreaming of it for 22 years. But, if they do, they’ll play a total of 10 home games should they play every game needed to win. That’s 3 in the ALDS, 3 in the ALCS and 4 in the World Series.
Toronto Blue Jays
Ellis spoke with David Baskin of Baskin Wealth Management and he had the following to say: “The actual amount of revenue compared to Rogers annual revenue unfortunately is fairly trivial”. At first, this might seem rather surprising given what we might expect the playoffs to generate for any team. But, when you think about just how much Rogers’ revenue is annually, it becomes less surprising. Ellis tells us that Rogers took in $7.5 billion in fiscal 2014.
According to Ellis, the revenue from ticket sales are split 3 ways between MLB, the club and players. Assuming, the Blue Jays do go all the way, that would mean about $20-$25M for Rogers Communications. So, when you look at it, the revenue form winning doesn’t exactly provide such a high boost. Now, this does not include the revenue from concessions, merchandise, etc. Still, they aren’t exactly raking in the dough, here. Now, they very well will likely benefit more form increased advertising on the television side of things given that they own Sportsnet, who carries the games.
And, this is where Blue Jays fans might feel a bit of a let down. See, we’d kind of operate under the notion that if more money was coming in, more money would be available, etc, etc. We kind of hoped that that money would be spent on things like, oh I don’t know, signing David Price. That’s really what we want to know. Will the money be there to bring in or hold on to some key players? Will payroll be able to handle these things?
We also have to remember that there are scheduled to be major (expensive) renovations to Rogers Centre over the next while, too. That is going to cost a pretty penny. And, as fans, we’re doing our part to cover the cost. We were told that we need to show up, sit in the seats, and show our
support. We’ve done that. Perhaps, we were mistaken in our judgement of the size of the impact we’d have.
The “Rogers is cheap” narrative has been running rampant for years now. And, really it’s been a chicken and egg debate. Fans always said, if you put a winning product on the field, we’ll spend. Ownership wanted to see support so it could put a winning product on the field. Well, we have that. The Toronto Blue Jays are a great product. They showed us just how entertaining a product they are. And, folks are lining up with their wallets to make it rain. But, unfortunately, it may not produce what we thought it would. Our spending may not increase the club’s ability to dump truckloads of money at the feet of free agents, etc.
Extra baseball is extra revenue. Playoffs are seen as a pot of gold at the end of a 162 game rainbow. At the end of the rainbow sits a leprechaun named Rogers. For fans of the Toronto Blue Jays, his pot of gold looks to be more like a thimble.
Next: 5 Reasons the Royals Will be Tough to Beat