MLB sportsbiz valuations

View From The US: 2024 MLB Franchise Valuations Ranking

April 4, 2024

In this View From article, Kurt Badenhausen Sportico’s Sports Valuations Reporter, looks into the MLB team valuations in 2024.

The average MLB team is worth $2.64 billion, according to data compiled by Sportico. The New York Yankees rank first at $7.9 billion, while the Miami Marlins rank last at $1.2 billion. Below are the values of the league’s 30 franchises, whose collective worth is $79 billion.

To derive the market value of the 30 MLB franchises, Sportico calculated each team’s revenue relying on publicly available information and financial records—and interviews with those knowledgeable of team finances, including sports bankers and attorneys who actively work on MLB transactions. We traded candor for anonymity. This information was vetted by multiple team or parent company CEOs, presidents, chief financial officers and media relations personnel, as well as industry experts and investors. Below are definitions of some major metrics:

Total Value: The sum of the enterprise market value of an MLB franchise combined with the equity value of team-related businesses and real estate holdings.

Team Value: MLB franchise valuation, derived from metrics by which brball team transactions occur, including aggregating local and national revenues and factoring in a team-specific multiplier. This represents the fair-market value of the team itself, excluding related businesses held by its owners. It includes the value of each franchise’s 3.3% interest in MLB Advanced Media, the league’s digital arm, which is acquired/dispossessed in tandem with the sale of a team, as well as its 3.3% interest in the league’s investment arm, undefinedball Endowment L.P. (BELP).

Team-Related Businesses and Real Estate Holdings: The value of a franchise or franchise owner’s equity in team-related businesses—that is, both those on the team’s balance sheet and held in distinct corporate entities—as well as government-assessed real estate related to venue, practice facilities and adjacent developments. Examples include the Boston Red Sox parent entity’s 80% interest in the New England Sports Network (NESN), holdings through the Atlanta Braves’ six subsidiaries of all or a portion of 31 parcels of land adjacent to its ballpark, and minor league teams owned by the Houston Astros and Philadelphia Phillies.

Teams’ stakes in regional sports networks are included in the related business category. Historically, those equity stakes held significant value, but they have declined significantly in recent years as cash flows have deteriorated. Sportico did not assign any value to the equity stakes in Diamond Sports’ regional sports networks or to those in Mid-Atlantic Sports Network held by the Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals.

For franchises that do not own their stadia, the value of a team’s lease—often with advantageous terms negotiated with municipal or state authorities—is captured in the Team Value category.

MLB sportsbiz valuations