A large payroll may make it easier to win in baseball. But as we saw yesterday, there is little relationship between market size and payroll in Major League Baseball. And now we see that there is even less of a relationship between market size and winning.
Below is a look at each team’s television market size, and tier winning percentage over the last three seasons. The yellow line is the trendline, which is nearly flat (R^2 = 0.05). That tells us there is no relationship between a team’s market size and the product they put on the field. If bigger cities had an advantage on the field, we would see the yellow line slanted up much more.
Of course, we have seen this in the standings in recent years with teams like the Tampa Bay Rays, who have won the American League East two of the past three seasons. And we have also seen teams like the New York Mets who have struggled to field even a mediocre team, despite playing in the biggest market of them all.
Market size may influence the team’s bottom-line. But it clearly has little or no impact on the winning-line.