Friday, January 26, 2007

Show me the money

Steve Finley laughs about ripping off the Giants. photo by jessicafm

Jay at the excellent Jay's Giants Blog picked up on Fred Claire's column on about how the Yanks, Giants and Red Sox are in the forefront of finding additional non-baseball revenues. We'll withhold comment on Claire lucking out as a Dodger GM in 1988 (largely due Campanis building the team plus career years from guys like Tudor, Stubbs, Hamilton and Shelby). Here are the pertinent parts of Claire's column --

In 1999, the San Francisco Giants took a creative step by forming Giants Enterprises, a business venture established to develop non-baseball uses for AT&T Park.
Recognizing that the Giants occupy the ballpark only about 85 days a year, Pat Gallagher of Giants Enterprises says the company is dedicated to exploring revenue-generating activities that compliment the team and the venue.
Recent events include a concert by Rolling Stones, the Emerald Bowl football game and a major soccer event.
"Our goal is to generate an annual profit and achieve predictable income," said Gallagher, a member of the Giants for 29 years and one of the most accomplished marketing people in the game.
The Giants' Web site states that, "Every area of AT&T Park is available for rental and our team of full-time professionals will see to very nuance, every detail, every last request."
The Giants declare that their stadium is perfect for everything from holiday receptions to seminars to theme parties to weddings and retirement parties.
And just about every service is offered from tours to decorations to appearances by former Giant players.

Claire makes the point that these additional funds made the Zito signing possible and he's probably right. But what's maddening -- when you're paying $55 for a decent seat, $20 to park and $30 to eat a meal at the park -- is the cheap-out route taken in recent years that leads to non-performers like Vizcaino, Niekro, Sweeney and Wright eating up plate appearances and innings. It's hard to believe that those were the best alternatives but they clearly were among the least expensive, even during the middle of the season. The worst was probably Finley getting 426 ABs last year and producing a total of 6 HRs and 40 RBIs, a .320 OBP and a .398 SLG, almost as if the Giants felt that they had to justify his salary by playing him every day. Meanwhile, Linden managed a .356 OBP and a .455 SLG -- nothing spectacular but far better than the $8 million man. With all this extra revenue coming in, what would have been so daunting about biting the bullet and admitting that Finley was done, DFAing him and either giving Linden a chance or finding someone for a couple of million bucks who's going to be more productive?


Blogger allfrank said...

I generally agree about Finely, the player, but didn
t the Giants pull a coup by getting him straight up for Alfonzo? And isn't Alou to blame for Finley playing over Linden? I am hopeful that Bochy will run more of a meritocracy and play the guys that produce.

8:15 PM  
Blogger Big D said...

I agree that part of the blame is Alou's but the front office is just as culpable. Just because they found what initially seemed like a decent solution for Edgardo's contract by getting Finley doesn't mean that it makes sense to keep playing him all year after it's demonstrated that he's not going to revert to 2004 form. Can you imagine the Yanks or Red Sox putting up with that lack of offense from a starter over an entire season?

11:12 PM  

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