There have been numerous false claims made all over many threads to the effect that due to revenue sharing and the central fund the Marlins have a profit "before they sell a ticket" and that therefore Loria has piles of money laying around to spend on payroll.
Before dealing with the figures for '12 and '13, let's go back to '09.
Before the leaked financials, I put together some rough guesstimates. I was about 20 mill low on expenses and 30 mill low on revenue, mainly because I didn't try to hang any numbers on "other stuff" other than a "+" sign, as in "108+."
Here are the ACTUAL numbers from the leaked '09 financials:
31.6 Central fund (Stark estimated 40, I used it)
44.0 Revenue share (Stark estimated 35)
16.7 Local radio/tv (Stark estimated 12)
21.5 Gate (Forbes estimated 21)
21.7 Other stuff (all actual numbers) -
Joint venture 2.1
MLB media 2.9
MLB Network .8
135.5 Total actual revenue (I estimated 108+)
43.0 Player payroll (MLB estimated 36.8, I used it)
4.8 Interest on debt to acquire team (87 mill per Forbes, I assumed an 8% rate and estimated 7.0)
8.8 Advertising/promo (I estimated 5.0)
66.3 All other expenses (I estimated 53.6 made up of:
15.0 Player-development system (Manfred)
9.0 Cost of acquiring players through draft/internationally (Manfred)
4.4 Addition to sinking fund to retire debt to acquire team assuming 20 year term
5.0 MLB pension fund (Stark)
5.0 MLB operations fund (Stark)
2.7 Front office (1.5 Beinfest .2 Hill .5 Freddi, secretaries/support .5)
2.0 15 players on the 40-man roster who are not in MLB
1.5 Hotel and per diem for road games
1.2 Coaches: bench, hitting, pitching, 3B, 1B, bullpen, tot 6 at .2
1.1 Chartered airplane 10-12k/hr, 10 hrs flying time on 10 road trips
1.0 General liability insurance
1.0 Ushers/security/ticket takers/misc ballpark expenses
0.7 1.45% medicare FICA on entire payroll (est 45 million)
0.6 6.2% on 106.8 social security FICA (est assuming 60 making 107K and 60 making 50K)
0.6 Health ins 5K@ for 120 employees
0.5 10 clubhouse/equipment/videotape guys
0.2 Office space for 100 employees
0.1 Baseballs, bats, uniforms
1.0 Miscellaneous junk I haven't thought of)
122.9 Total actual expenses (I estimated 102.4)
I was about 13 million light on "all other" expenses and think that was mostly made up about 4 mill in stadium rent and liability insurance and about 6 million for 80 non-player employees at 50K each plus benefits, as the Marlins have over 200 employees and I had assumed 120.
The remaining shortfall could be accounted for by benefits costing more than I assumed. The rest of the 20 million total discrepancy in my original guesstimates is accounted for by about 6 million of MLB player payroll and about 4 million of advertising, less about 2 million of debt interest.
However, the most important FACT to be gleaned from the ACTUAL '09 revenue and expense figures is this:
Expenses for everything other than the MLB player payroll were 79.9 million in '09.
Assuming 2% inflation, those expenses grew to about 84.8 million in '12. MLB player payroll was 102 million (Cot's) and total expenses in '12 were about 186.8 million.
What's happened to revenue since '09?
Gate-yield was up about 30 million.
Central fund (based on national TV deals) was apparently down about 8 million to 23.7 million (this will go up to about 50 mill/PER TEAM in '14 -- holy crap! Serious money!)
Revenue sharing averaged about 27 million/team in '12, so I'll use that, nobody outside the FO and MLB's FO and other FOs knows the real number.
Concessions - Advertising/sponsors - Merchandise, etc. were probably up about 10 million.
So, revenue of 135.5 mill in '08 probably grew to about 150.5 mill in '12.
Forbes estimated revenue for '12 was 148 mill -- the lowest for any team. Sounds reasonable.
My current estimated loss for '12 is thus about 36.3 million. Using Forbes' revenue number, it's 38.8 million. The Marlins say the loss was about 40 million.
In '13, non-MLB player costs will inflate by about 2 mill to about 86.8 mill.
If they project an average '13 ticket price of 27 (down 10% from '12) with paid attendance of 1.8 million (down 20% from '12) 77% (typical yield to the home team) of that is 37 mill. So gate-yield will likely decline by about 14 million. Or more, if they are too optimistic about '13 sales.
Costs up 2 mill. Gate down 14 mill. Concessions and merchandise sales will also suffer by some not insignificant amount, say 2 million.
Revenue back down to around 134 mill, non-player expenses up to 87 mill -- that leaves 47 million for player payroll. Less if you assume they want to leave a little margin for error and/or try recoup some of the 35-40 mill they lost last year.
But, in '13 we owe 8.5 mill to TOR for Reyes, etc., 4 mill to AZI for Bell and 2.5 mill to Ozzie, total 15 million for guys who aren't here.
So, that leaves 32 million.
16 other guys @ ~.5: ~8
And there you have it.
See? There is a method to their madness, but none of it has to do with "greed" or "thievery" or "screwing the fans." It's just a business. And there weren't enough fans (from whatever county) to justify continuing to lose with a big payroll. Those guys had to go. Simple as that.
The good news is that next year they will pick up something like a 26 mill increase in central fund TV revenues and they will only owe 6.5 mill for guys who aren't here, down from 15 mill this year. That's 34.5 mill they'll have to spend next year that they don't have this year. If they somehow manage to contend this year, that'll help the gate yield and concession and merchandise revenue.
I'm adding the words "Loria is a crook" so I can easily find this the next time there is an outburst by those who want to lynch Loria for no good reason.