A Letter to Milwaukee Brewers Owner Mark Attanasio

Paul VincentContributor IJanuary 29, 2009

Hey Mark...stop your whining! You have been an MLB owner for two years and already you are crying salary cap! Your reason is the Yankee spending spree this off season. You buy your team for $424 million and you expect a salary cap or an increase in the luxury tax for teams that go over the salary threshold. Mark, you are barking up a tree that will come crashing down on you faster than ever!

Listen I am not a baseball statistician or an accountant, but I do see when a team has $80 million coming off its books after an unsuccessful season, not making the playoffs and making four million plus fans in NY unhappy, you have to spend to make them happy! The Yankees went out and filled the holes needed, three starting pitchers and a bat to supplant the loss of Giambi and Abreu.

The Yankees did that by signing Sabathia, Burnett, resigning Pettitte, and Big Tex. The funny fact is that the Yanks still have $10-15 million leftover and that does not include the $10 or so millions they set aside to spend most off seasons. My question is if you were the Yankees owner, what would you do?

Owners who stash money away for their own personal gain would not last long in the New York market. An owner like the late Carl Pohlad, the Lerner family and Peter Anglo's would be driven out of New York faster than a Red Sox fan at a Yankee World Series parade!

You are a new owner Mark. You nose is still wet and you are complaining. What are your complaints?? You can't afford C.C. or any other high priced free agent, but you go out and give Trevor Hoffman a $5 million plus salary to be your closer. Mark you were still a fan when Tom Hicks threw $250 million at ARod, not the Yankees, but the Rangers.

Hey Mark what about those Rockies throwing $100 million plus at Hampton or the Dodgers throwing $100 million plus at Brown. What team rescued those teams from financial oblivion? The New York Yankees, except for Hampton. Now don't get me wrong the Yankees have made some boneheaded signings in the past, Danny Tartabull, Kei Igawa, Carl Pavano, and more. They have paid for those signings! 

Your complaints are about as valid as Citibank executives explaining the purchase of their new private jet. You paid $424 million knowing that you entered a world of money for players. You have a great nucleus and farm system. You are going to have to pay them at some point. Ryan Braun, Yovanni Gallardo, and Prince Fielder are going to command big money. Mark you have to understand, baseball is money!

What have you done with the money given to you from those teams that went over the payroll threshold. Can you account for every dollar given to you? Have you spent that money on your baseball team? How can you say that baseball is unfair.

First, the New York Yankees draw over four million fans and more will come once the new stadium opens in 2009. The Yankees have their own network, YES and just recently partnered with the Dallas Cowboys in a joint stadium concession company. Add some outside partnerships with the Yamauri Giants of the Japanese baseball league as well as Manchester United (soccer). That is smart business!

You have been an owner for two years! Two years and you have zero facts. Ask any New Yorker who bleeds pinstripes and ask them what if the Steinbrenner's kept most of their profits. What is they didn't put 75% of their profit back into their product? What would the Yankee faithful reaction be? The Steinbrenner's put their profits back into the team and look for ways to make money.

Take a page out of the Steinbrenner's book and look for ways to raise capital instead of sticking your "new" ownership hand out for more money! You want parity go own an NFL team! 

Mark wake up and welcome to MLB! The Yankees, Mets, Red Sox, Angels, Phillies, and others are keeping MLB above water. Teams like the Royals, Twins, Marlins, Nationals, Padres, and Mariners are cutting back so much and all they are doing is taking hand outs! How come MLB does not have a system of checks and balances for teams that receive luxury tax money?

Why doesn't Bud get on those teams that take the money from the luxury taxes and pocket it? Why do the teams that spend get the rug pulled out from under them. I wonder if Mark will be upset when the Yankees come to Milwaukee and sell out Miller Park for three games of inter league play?

Baseball is a great sport and allowing these whiny new owners to come in and complain will ruin the scope of baseball! Look at the Arizona Cardinals in the NFL. It took Michael Bidwell to turn this franchise around, because if it was up to his father the team would be in last place forever. Sometimes you need to compete to win, not just on the field, but in the front office.  

Lastly, Mark the reason why other owners are not speaking up like you are is because they understand that the Yankees and the other teams I mentioned are what makes baseball the best sport in the world. Without the Yankees baseball would be blah! Look at the World Series TV numbers when the Yankees are not involved. Look at the 2000 World Series and tell me something...were you watching?

What if Mark Attansio was owner of the Yankees? If you do what you are doing in Milwaukee, well let us just say NY fans would burn you alive! The Steinbrenner's are not even the richest owners in baseball, but they give back to the fans, by taking their profits and getting players that will put more fannies in the seats!

They are a fan based ownership group. Sure they put more luxury boxes in the new stadium, but fans will come out to see the Yankees play and pay a lot of money for those seats. Why? They are loyal to their team. They know their money is not pocketed, but put back into their team!

Hey Mark just shut up and spend your money...UMM the Yankees money to be competitive. Like the old saying goes, the more time spent on worrying about another team only makes your team that less better! So relax and wait until the Yankees come to Milwaukee and make you more money than you have made in three months of the season before you open you big new owner mouth. Just shout your mouth newbie!