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Reproduced from Forbes; Chart: Axios Visuals

MLB team valuations have risen yet again, capping a decade of growth during which the average team's value has increased four-fold, per Forbes.

Why it matters: With team profits also reaching record highs — an average of $50 million per team for a 25% increase YoY — the league is confident it will be able to weather whatever economic downturn a shortened season might cause.

By the numbers:

  • $5 billion: The Yankees remain the most valuable team in the league (second only to the Cowboys' $5.5 billion across all sports).
  • 9% growth: The Yankees, Nationals ... and Orioles (?!) led the pack, each posting a 9% increase in valuation YoY.
  • 5 teams saw their value remain unchanged compared to last year (Diamondbacks, Tigers, Indians, Athletics and Royals).
  • Just 2 teams saw their value decrease (Pirates by 1%, Marlins by 2%).

One mind-blowing stat: If you take away just one nugget from this piece, let it be this. In 2013, 11 of 30 MLB teams failed to turn a profit. This year, the Marlins were the lone team to stake that unfortunate claim (they lost $6 million).

The bottom line: Baseball, like all sports, is going to take a major hit during these unprecedented times. But thanks to a decade of growth, and three major, national media deals that will increase by up to 50% in 2022, it will be back in a big way — whenever that may be.

Reproduced from Forbes; Chart: Axios Visuals

Go deeper

Bipartisan police reform negotiations end without deal

Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.) with Sens. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) in the Capitol in May 2021. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Bipartisan talks on reforming police tactics and accountability, prompted by George Floyd's murder in May 2020, have ended without a compromise, Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), a key negotiator, said Wednesday.

Why it matters: Lawmakers, led by Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.) and Sens. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) and Booker, had been working toward a bipartisan deal for months but they fell apart due to disagreements on qualified immunity and other issues.

Biden speaks with Macron for first time since diplomatic crisis

President Biden and French President Emmanuel Macron have a conversation ahead of the NATO summit in Brussels, on June 14, 2021. Photo: Dursun Aydemir/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

President Biden on Wednesday spoke with French President Emmanuel Macron for the first time since a diplomatic row erupted over a scrapped submarine order, per the White House.

Driving the news: Macron said that the French ambassador will return to Washington next week and will resume working with senior U.S. officials.

2 hours ago - World

Scoop: U.S. and Israel held secret talks on Iran "plan B"

Bennett and Biden. Photo: Sarahbeth Maney/Pool/Getty Images

The U.S. and Israel held secret talks on Iran last week to discuss a possible “plan B” if nuclear talks are not resumed, two senior Israeli officials tell me.

Why it matters: This is the first time a top-secret U.S.-Israel strategic working group on Iran has convened since the new Israeli government took office in June.