I'm trying to hope for the best. I really am.
But the Cardinals latest excusefest about why they don't think they can afford to sign Matt Holliday -- oh, and by the way, they might not be able to afford to keep Albert Pujols, either -- is just a bunch of garbage. Frankly, I don't know how much longer I can justify spending my hard-earned money to support a team that doesn't care about its fans.
Oh, sure, they run messages across the scoreboard that proclaim the St. Louis fans the best in baseball. But at the same time they insult our intelligence by presuming that we can't do some simple math.
Ticket prices, at least in my section, have gone up nearly 50 percent since the Cardinals opened their new stadium in 2006 under the guise that it was going to make the team more financially competitive. Financial experts say the team's revenue during that time has increased from about $160 million a year to about $235-$240 million during that span. So, how much do the team's owners invest back in the team: Nothing. Zero, Zilch. Nada. In fact, they're spending less on making the Rebirds a competitive team now than they did in the last year of the old ballpark.
According to Cot's Baseball Contracts, here's the Cardinals payroll the last five years:
- 2009: $ 88,528,409
- 2008: $ 99,624,449
- 2007: $ 90,286,823
- 2006: $ 88,891,371
- 2005: $ 92,106,833