I think it is obvious that Ilya Kovalchuk’s contract was a slick attempt to circumvent the salary cap. However, I wish they had allowed it. Salary caps are generally bad for sports leagues. They are a socailly acceptable form of communism and I applaud Major League Baseball for avoiding even a soft cap. Why should everyone be limited to the same resources?
The Yankees and Red Sox spend more on their teams than anyone else, and everyone else complains that they have an unfair competitive advantage. The two AL East powers generate a disproportionate amount of MLB revenue, much of which is shared with the rest of the teams. In 2005 Yankees and Red Sox hats equated to 53% of all MLB headwear and with the Yankees and Red Sox each winning a World Series since then, I imagine that number has increased even more. Numbers like these apply to all types of MLB merchandise, and profits from MLB merchandise are shared between all 30 teams.
So small market fans everywhere, next time you talk to a Yankees fan, don’t complain, instead thank them for making your team profitable.