No two Major League Baseball teams are tied closer together than the Baltimore Orioles and the Washington Nationals. Yes, there are teams geographically closer to each other (Mets/Yankees, Cubs/ChiSox, Dodgers/Angels, A’s/Giants), but no two teams are as financially linked as the Nats and the O’s. Thanks to the creation of MASN in 2004, the Nationals are financially dependent on the Orioles, and to a lesser extent, vice versa.
Accordingly, it’s worth taking a financial snapshot of the two franchises from time to time. A lot of these numbers speak for themselves, and they’re pretty damning for the Nats’ unfriendly neighbors to the North.
Orioles: $100.8 million
Nationals: $112 million
Projected 2014 Payroll (source: Baseball Reference)
Orioles: $82.8 million
Nationals: $130.3 million
Franchise Value (Team value + MASN value) (source: Bloomberg)
Orioles: $1.12 billion ($514 mil + $492 mil)
Nationals: $850 million ($637 mil + $108 mil)
Annual Revenue (source: Bloomberg)
Orioles: $210 million
Nationals: $230 million
Conclusion: the two teams’ baseball revenues are, as designed, relatively equal. But the Orioles are sitting on a gold mine–the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network, in which they own a majority share. As seen above, the O’s have yet to invest their financial windfall in the team.