Market Power

Musings by an academic economist on the power of markets and the power over markets.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Market Power in Baseball's Output Market

This semester, while lecturing about the market power held over host cities by Major League Baseball, I rattled off the names of a few big cities that may be able to (privately) support a MLB franchise. I mentioned Jacksonville, New Orleans, and Charlotte. I forgot Las Vegas. Looks like Las Vegas wants to replace its AAA franchise with a MLB franchise. The Marlins are interested in looking elsewhere. Dan Le Batard of the Miami Herald chimes in here.

The Marlins haven't been able to get public funding for a new baseball-only stadium. Le Batard complains:

"We stink as a baseball town.
Not one but two championships in the past seven years?
And we still have one of the worst attendances anywhere in major-league sports?"

Maybe this is evidence to why the Marlins are looking for public funding for a stadium: there's not enough private money available because it's simply not a good investment in Miami. The population's demand for baseball is not high enough.