Steve Swindal: The Former Future Owner of the NY Yanks?

Reports have it that George Steinbrenner’s daughter filed divorce papers against husband Steve Swindal. How this affects the future of the team is pretty unclear right now. In a way, this isn’t worth posting about. It’s news, but there’s not much on which to comment. Say he’s indeed out as successor. Is that bad news for the Bombers? Is Brian Cashman’s future less secure? Is it good news? What do/did we know about Swindal anyway? It’s an impossible question to answer. More interesting is the speculation that George is behind the decision to divorce. This is speculation on my part of course. Still, could he have ordered the divorce as a preemptive firing as a message to others in the organization that he hasn’t lost his Georgeness yet? Is Howie Spira involved somehow?

On the way to work today I passed by Yankee Stadium. The sign said 6 more days until opening day. This was very early in the morning and they hadn’t changed it yet. But the point was made. We’re very close, so very close to actually talking about what’s happening on the field.

27 comments… add one
  • I’ve heard Swindal is a good guy, notwithstanding his recent DUI. Maybe Peter Abrahams wrote it somewhere?
    If the Steinbrenner family doesn’t have an heir apparent, I could see them selling, capitalizing on the star power off the current franchise. The first buyer that comes to mind, though probably wildly off base, is Donald Trump. Could you imagine? “Alex, you’re fired.”

    Tyrel SF March 28, 2007, 7:32 pm
  • mark cuban perhaps?

    dc March 28, 2007, 10:07 pm
  • YF and I are going to open a Paypal account. Maybe the lot of us can pool some cash to take over the club.

    SF March 28, 2007, 10:17 pm
  • i’m in….is swindal pronounced phonetically as “swindle”?

    dc March 28, 2007, 10:22 pm
  • If Swindal did something to piss of the wife… does he instantly become the worlds dumbest husband?

    Anonymous March 28, 2007, 10:37 pm
  • Would being caught driving drunk in an extremely public way count?

    sam YF March 28, 2007, 10:46 pm
  • Does anybody know what percentage of the team Steinbrenner actually owns. What about Swindal and other? Has there been any actual transfer of ownership from Steinbrenner to anybody?
    I wonder, because this reminds me a lot of the Washington Redskins. When Jack Kent Cooke died, the tax implications of his estate essentially kept him from transferring ownership to his son, and ultimately led to the sale of the team outside the Cooke family.

    VicSF March 28, 2007, 10:57 pm
  • Now introducing: new Yankee owner George Costanza.

    Paul SF March 28, 2007, 11:17 pm
  • “If Swindal did something to piss of the wife… does he instantly become the worlds dumbest husband?
    Posted by: | Wednesday, March 28, 2007 at 10:37 PM
    Would being caught driving drunk in an extremely public way count?
    Posted by: sam YF | Wednesday, March 28, 2007 at 10:46 PM”
    See, that’s just funny, I like funny.

    Anonymous March 29, 2007, 12:14 am
  • Maybe Mr. Swindal wasn’t um… satisfying Mrs. Swindal enough so she divorced him.
    And wouldn’t it be funny if Theo Epstein married the divorcee Mrs. Swindal? Then he would be in line to become next owner of the Yankees.

    Devil Rays' Fan March 29, 2007, 3:32 am
  • Who knows what was going on between Swindal and his wife, but getting arrested for drunk driving while cruising through a seedy part of town at 4:30 in the morning, uh…probably didn’t help any.

    Whatever March 29, 2007, 4:02 am
  • Hey, one of you guys, we need a post on this STAT!
    Just when you think things can’t get any more absurd…

    LocklandSF March 29, 2007, 9:39 am
  • 1) I will actively work against SF owning the Yankees.
    2) There have been stories that the Yankees have actually spent so much the last few years that they’ve actually lost money, and the theory is that they did that to build a team that would be worth more.

    john March 29, 2007, 9:48 am
  • John, for the most part, none of these teams actually make any money at the end of the day, they break even or maybe inch out a tiny profit, MLB teams are basically toys for the VERY VERY VERY rich, making a ton of money is not really a priority.
    Fuzzy accounting practices is the only way these teams show a large profit.

    LocklandSF March 29, 2007, 9:59 am
  • 1) I will actively work against SF owning the Yankees.
    The Paypal account would be to make us ALL owners, John, forcing me into a powerless minority role. A profitable powerlessness, hopefully!

    SF March 29, 2007, 10:04 am
  • …i will defend your right to be a partner in this venture sf…
    “…Fuzzy accounting practices…”
    …lockland, you mean like the one where a certain team keeps insisting that the $51m they coughed up just to talk to a certain pitcher isn’t real money?…

    dc March 29, 2007, 11:42 am
  • “fuzzy accounting practices”
    More like the one where the cable television network owned by the team’s principal owner and dedicated to airing that teams games brings in millions a year but through some trick of accounting it’s not considered a team asset and therefore not subject to revenue sharing.
    That’s a pretty rough sketch, but I believe we’re both guilty.

    Tyrel SF March 29, 2007, 11:57 am
  • It’s bad karma for Yankee haters to be Yankee owners. Ask the psychic.
    And btw, the Sox are VERY profitable. They are now valued at over $1.5 billion, and that’s because of their revenues.

    john March 29, 2007, 12:21 pm
  • tyrel…accounting 101: revenues from non-baseball endeavors, i.e. the television station, which airs other than baseball games, are not fair game for revenue sharing…the fact that the same guy owns both businesses is a coincidence…somehow i think you’d see it my way if the sox owned, say nesn…

    dc March 29, 2007, 12:40 pm
  • besides baseball doesn’t have a true revenue sharing system anyway…it’s a luxury tax based on payroll dollars, unless you want to include the salaries of the folks that work at “yes”…

    dc March 29, 2007, 12:42 pm
  • “besides baseball doesn’t have a true revenue sharing system anyway”
    dc, you’re wrong on this. I’m not an accountant, but I am a lawyer.
    The Luxury Tax, to which you allude, is different Revenue Sharing. Under the CBA, each team operating at a profit “contributes 34% of its Net Local Revenue to a putative pool; that pool is then divided equally among all Clubs, with the difference between each Club’s payment into the putative pool and its receipt therefrom producing the net payment or net receipt for that Club.” CBA, Article XXIV, section (A)(7).
    Net Local Revenue ostensibly includes television revenues, unless the team manages to shelter those revenues, as Steinbrenner and the Sox have both done (which I stated above). They’re just exploiting a loophole that hasn’t yet been closed.
    Read this –
    And here’s the CBA, if you’re interested –

    Tyrel SF March 29, 2007, 1:42 pm
  • Should read “different [i] than [/i] Revenue Sharing”

    Tyrel SF March 29, 2007, 1:44 pm
  • …thanks for the education tyrel…i have an accounting degree and practiced it in one of my former careers, hence the observation that “tv revenue” is not considered revenue from “baseball operations”, but since you’re an attorney, i’d agree you’re more of an expert on interpreting the basic agreement…i was not aware that “actual” revenue sharing existed in baseball given everyone’s preoccupation with the luxury tax component…my desktop choked when i tried to download the several hundred pages of the agreement, but i did see revenue sharing referenced in the table of contents…would you mind sharing the highlights of your interpretations of what it means, especially what’s included/not included in revenue, how it’s “shared”, and to what extent teams are obligated to spend any of the money on baseball operations?….thanks

    dc March 29, 2007, 10:23 pm
  • No problem dc. The Forbes article is a pretty good overview on how YES and NESN are used to shelter money from the revenue sharing scheme.
    I don’t have much time to use my “legal interpretation” skills, but here is the contract language relevant to revenue, from Section XXIV –
    “(3) “Central Revenue”shall mean all of the centrally-generated
    operating revenues of the Major League Clubs that are administered
    by the Office of the Commissioner or central baseball including,but
    not limited to, revenues from national and international broadcast-
    ing agreements (television,cable,radio and Internet),Major League
    Baseball Properties, Inc., Baseball Television, Inc., Major League
    Baseball Enterprises,Major League Baseball Advanced Media,Inc.,
    the Copyright Arbitration Royalty Panel, superstation agreements
    between the Commissioner’s Office and the Clubs whose games are
    transmitted on a distant signal (“Superstation Agreements”),the All-
    Star Game and national marketing and licensing.
    (4) “Local Revenue”shall mean a Club’s Defined Gross Rev-
    enue less its share of Central Revenue.
    (5) “Actual Stadium Expenses”shall mean the “Stadium Opera-
    tions Expenses”of each Club, as reported on an annual basis in the
    Club’s FIQ.
    (6) “Net Local Revenue”shall mean a Club’s Local Revenue less
    its Actual Stadium Expenses.
    (7) The “Base Plan” shall be a 34% straight pool plan. The
    amount of net payment or net receipt under the Base Plan for each
    Major League Club shall be determined as follows:Each Club con-
    tributes 34% of its Net Local Revenue to a putative pool; that pool
    is then divided equally among all Clubs, with the difference
    between each Club’s payment into the putative pool and its receipt
    therefrom producing the net payment or net receipt for that Club.”
    Profits from local are included as Net Local Revenues. As an example (and the Sox do the same thing, so I’m not pointing any fingers), in the year the Forbes article was written, YES earned approximately $130 million in revenue from the Yanks games. But through the sheltering system, the Yanks were able to only claim $52 million in profit, meaning $68 in profits went directly to Steinbrenner without being subjected to the 34% percent payout.

    Tyrel SF March 30, 2007, 2:47 pm
  • should read “Profits from local TELEVISION are…”

    Tyrel SF March 30, 2007, 4:09 pm
  • thanks tyrel…i appreciate the detailed explanation…

    dc March 30, 2007, 9:34 pm
  • I heard he was stepping out on Jenny, but not with the ladies…..could be just a rumor, but it came from a very reliable source in Tampa…..

    wondering.... April 16, 2007, 10:56 am

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