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SBD/March 1, 2011/Franchises
Published March 1, 2011
TRIPLE-DIGIT HEAT: In Dallas, Evan Grant reported the Rangers' Opening Day payroll is expected to be around $94M, 70% above their $55.25M payroll at the start of the '10 MLB season. Add in "possible bonuses this year -- the Rangers have budgeted for them -- and the figure could climb" above $100M. It is "not unreasonable to think the club will pass the previous franchise high" of $105.3M in '02. Grant: "It serves as a reminder that the club (read: ownership) better be prepared to keep upping the ante. ... If this window is to remain open for more than one or two years, it's a commitment the Rangers are going to have to make over and over again" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 2/27).
PAY TO PLAY: The GUARDIAN's Matt Scott reports Randy Lerner has injected more than $325.3M (all figures U.S.) into Aston Villa since buying the EPL club five years ago. Lerner has "overseen the growth of revenues" from $60.5M in '06-07 -- his first full season as owner -- to $147.8M last season. At the same time, Aston Villa's salary payments have grown from $36.4M in his first year to about $130M, "nearly 88% of the club's total revenues." Losses last year "were marginally down," to $61M from $75M a year earlier (GUARDIAN, 3/1).
LIFE'S A PEACH: In Atlanta, Chris Vivlamore cites a source as saying that "two non-disclosure agreements were submitted over the weekend from parties showing preliminary interest in purchasing all or part" of the Hawks, Thrashers and Philips Arena. The source indicated that "as many as five non-disclosure agreements have been signed over the past several weeks" (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 3/1).