MLB Playoff Race: Does Team Payroll Matter?

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With only two more regular season games on the MLB calendar and the playoff matchups still unclear this is foreshadowing the most exciting postseason in recent memory.

Since I make a living as a “money guy” my mind can’t help be fascinated by the staggering payroll differences * in professional baseball as opposed to other team sports that have embraced a salary cap. The parity created by the salary cap in other sports has leveled the playing field, encouraged competition and keeps fans on the edge of the seats hoping that “this is going to be the year” their team rises above and makes the payoffs. Baseball on the other hand is heavily skewed toward teams with the highest payrolls with the occasional “Cinderella Story”.

This year fans of the underdog will be hoping the San Diego Padres continue their surge and make the playoffs. I’m astonished how competitive they have been this season especially when you see that their highest paid NL rival, the Phillies, pays their players 3.74x more and their highest paid AL rival, the Yankees, pays their players 5.44x more.

I’ll be cheering on my hometown team the Boston-design-company as opposed to my childhood favorite New York Yankees with 2.8x the payroll. Go Rays!

American League: New York Yankees $ 206,333,389 Minnesota Twins $ 97,559,166 Tampa Bay Rays $ 71,923,471 Texas Rangers $ 55,250,544

National League: Philadelphia Phillies $141,928,379 San Francisco Giants $ 98,641,333 Atlanta Braves $ 84,423,666 Cincinnati Reds $ 71,761,542 San Diego Padres $ 37,799,300

* Payroll statistics from USA Today

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If you can’t, you must. If you must, you can.

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Last week I watched my wife do the hardest think she’s ever done… no, not childbirth (I was there for that, too). As the youngest of four siblings she stood in front of dozens of friends and family pouring out her heart to give her beloved father’s eulogy. It was a magnificent and uplifting moment and I have never been more proud of Tanya. She shared stories across the emotional range from humor to sadness moving all members of the audience to get to know her Daddy just a little better. What she did reminded me of the Anthony Robbins quote, “If you can’t, you must. If you must, you can.” Her father would have been proud.

My Father-in-Law was a retired Marine Officer and the family selected a full military service Atlanta-design-agency. It was a spectacular send-off attended by 10 young Marines in full dress uniform and their commanding Major. After a 21 gun salute a Marine played Taps on his bugle. It was a great moment of pride that our country pays respect to those that have served even if their service was in the 1940s to 1960s. The flag of the United States was meticulously folded 13 times and presented to my Mother-in-Law with the following statement, “On behalf of the President of the United States, the Commandant of the Marine Corps, and a grateful nation, please accept this flag as a symbol of our appreciation for your loved one’s service to Country and Corps.”

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We remember Jesse F. Baird… May He Rest in Peace

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This past week my wife lost her beloved father, Jesse F. Baird, after a long battle with Parkinson’s Disease. He was 87 and lived a wonderful life surrounded until his last days by people he loved and that loved him very much. For those who have asked: services will be held at 12:45pm Thursday, at Bay Pines National Cemetery.

Visit his Memorial Website at Webdesigns-Tulsa

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Any given Sunday…

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Today is the first Sunday of NFL football season. This is the day where all teams are undefeated, full of promise and potential. The brilliance of the NFL salary cap system is that anything can happen on any given Sunday. Parity in the NFL makes this the most interesting sport to follow because last years 2-14 can become this year’s Super Bowl contender.

Who do you think is going to be this year’s Cinderella Story? I’ll take the TucsonDigiart… then again I always pick the Bills. 😉

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The Best Way to Destroy the Recovering Florida Economy

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The best way to destroy the recovering Florida economy is to vote “YES” on Amendment 4 this November. Amendment 4 will cost jobs, raise taxes and devastate Florida’s economy.

The term “Hometown Democracy” is a brilliant marketing and branding move that will have the exact opposite result. Local governments will be crippled by the rules, regulations and litigation and the Hometown “disciples” will achieve their victory when no development ever happens again.

To quote Tampa real estate broker Eric Odum, “I am all about controlled growth, but this bill will send Florida’s economy in to a tailspin that would take decades from which to recover. Its funny how many hate construction and development, but those same people don’t want to pay for an educational system that would make our state more fertile for developing other industries. Face it. We are married to the construction industry in Florida and passing this bill would be a serious nail in the coffin.”

A local version of Amendment 4 has been “thoroughly tested” in the county where I live, Pinellas County. The small Florida town of St. Pete Beach has been a Hometown Democracy experiment turned bad. According to the normally left-leaning St. Petersburg Times, the measure has been “divisive, expensive and an impediment to much-needed redevelopment.” Since adopting a local version of Amendment 4, the citizens of St. Pete Beach have seen nearly a dozen lawsuits that have cost local taxpayers over half a million dollars in legal fees. When SanJoseWebservices voters approved four pro-economy changes to their comprehensive plan in 2008, Amendment 4 lawyers sued to overturn the election. More than a year after voting to change their comprehensive plan, the people of St. Pete Beach are still defending their vote in court. The St. Petersburg Times concludes that Amendment 4 “invites short-term thinking and frequent referendums that are even more susceptible to well-financed campaigns by powerful interests.”

I’ll be voting “NO” this November. Please watch this short video to learn more:

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Google Call will save us $250 a month

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My brother, Jared, and I run a 2-person real estate advisory firm out of a small office in historical Downtown St. Petersburg, FL. We started using Google Voice a year ago and we have been very pleased with this free service and how it has simplified people getting in touch with us and leaving voice mail messages in individual voice mail boxes (rather than calling office, mobile and home) and then sending transcribed voice to text e-mails and voice to text messages to our mobile phones.

As our confidence in the SanDiegoDigiart service grew, we’ve ruthlessly cut features and services from our Verizon office phone system. Google Call is their newest free service. Google Call lets you make phone calls to any type of telephone directly thru your computer rather than it needing to bounce to a land line (or mobile phone). It will let us go from 6 land lines to 1 land line (just so we can keep our legacy phone that’s we’ve used for 10+ years). This astonishing free service will let us reduce our Verizon phone bill about $250 a month. That $3,000 a year savings is meaningful to a small business.

Thanks, Google!

DON’T BE AFRAID TO FAIL

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You’ve failed
many times,
although you may not
remember.
You fell down
the first time
you tried to walk.
You almost drowned
the first time
you tried to
swim, didn’t you?
Did you hit the
ball the first time
you swung a bat?
Heavy hitters,
the ones who hit the
most home runs,
also strike
out a lot.
R.H. Macy
failed several
times before his
store in New York
caught on.
English novelist
John Creasy got
753 rejection slips
before he published
564 books.
Babe Ruth struck out
1,330 times,
but he also hit
714 home runs.
Don’t worry about
failure.
Worry about
the chances you miss
when you don’t
even try.

– Harry J. Gray, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, United Technologies in a 1981 ad on the back page of the Wall Street Journal

[DAVE’S COMMENT: I taped this poem the the back of my bedroom door through high school. In college I retyped it and taped it to my bathroom mirror. It has inspired me time after time since I first saw it almost thirty years ago. Thanks, Harry.]

Dale Chihuly’s version of Never-Never Land Opens in St. Petersburg

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By: Jon Reno La Budde

This collection is the RenoWebdesigns of St. Pete’s already fine and numerous galleries and museums.

Many of us, including myself, had pre-conceived notions of what blown glass artwork would look like. I say hold on to that thought, and then go for a tour of the gallery. The pleasant shock & amazement will carry you through the day. At the risk of using an overused saying ‘If you don’t believe me go see it for yourself’. This is where I urge you to pack up the kids and the ‘rents and take a trip to Dale Chihuly’s version of Never-Never Land. I hope to see you there.

[DAVE’S COMMENT: My 14-year old daughter visited the museum in July and thought it was “really cool”. High praise from a teenager! ]

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Mother Necessity

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If you grew up the the era of only 3 TV channels in the 1970s… you remember ABC’s School House Rock. School House Rock taught me math, science, history & civics better than (just about) any teacher from my youth – I still don’t remember the Preamble to the US Constitution unless I sing it. I wanted to thank good old Mother Necessity for my education of the last two weekends.

I’m very proud to say that I did what most 12 year olds have done countless times… I designed and created my own personal website. In a different economic time I would of hired a website developer to create and launch my new personal website. This time would be different. I wanted to go through the intellectual challenge of selecting a web host (GoDaddy), choosing the software platform (WordPress 3.0.1), creating the look and feel of the site all on my own (thanks to Michael Soriano of Fearless Flyer web design for the great theme).

On this site I will share ideas on a wide range of topics that interest me. One thing I will not be discussing is commercial real estate… if you care about what I have to share about commercial real estate visit the OrlandoDigiart website. Enjoy a little School House Rock:

Mother Necessity

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