Jeff Moorad, a former San Diego Padres chief executive officer, said the size of a team’s television contract isn’t reliant on the club’s on-field success.
“I’ll go out on a limb and say winning is immaterial,” Moorad said at the Bloomberg Sports Business Summit hosted by Bloomberg Link in New York.
Baseball games can be seen in markets all around the country. That gives teams the ability to go into any corporate marketing department and say they can deliver the top 25-27 markets in the U.S. on a one-stop basis, Moorad said.
That and the media industry’s need to deliver the sort of programming that viewers are less likely to record for later viewing drives larger and larger deals, he said.
The Padres are 64-74 this season and 13 1/2 games behind the first-place San Francisco Giants in the National League West division of Major League Baseball. They have had one winning season since 2007 and never have won the World Series.
“We did a 20-year contract with Fox in San Diego, and over 20 years, Fox is betting we are going to figure it out as a baseball franchise,” Moorad said. “It’s interesting. I don’t know that winning is a major factor when it relates to media contracts long-term.”