Yankees Most Valuable Team in MLB, Forbes List Shows

Even amid four consecutive losing seasons, the Philadelphia Phillies' franchise is gaining value.

John George of the Philadelphia Business Journal also pointed towards the lucrative $2.5 billion Comcast deal that just kicked in a year ago.

Major League Baseball and its clubs have long disputed the accuracy of Forbes' findings, which nevertheless are widely referenced as a basis of comparison.

Forbes says the overall industry is doing quite well, with the average team value increasing 19 percent to $1.54-billion, based on the combination of new local TV deals, "surging profitability" overall, and the "escalating value" of Major League Baseball Advanced Media, which is a money-maker on the Internet and technology side. Additionally, player expenses over the same period rose 17.2 percent to $143 million. Michael Ilitch bought the team for $85 million in 1992 and had in recent years authorized a payroll among the highest in baseball.

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As one team official said recently, "We're spending more now than we ever have, just allocating it differently".

The New York Yankees are now worth $3.7 billion. They are the runaway leader as the second-most valuable team, the Dodgers ($2.75 billion), are valued at nearly a billion dollars less.

As a whole, the industry continues to grow. The team has topped the rankings for the past 20 years, and was the second-highest sports team overall in the US after the NFL's Dallas Cowboys, which are worth $4.2 billion. No other team has been No. 1 on this season since Forbes started it 20 years ago.


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