Yankees now worth an MLB-leading $7.1 billion as team values keep rising

Once again, the New York Yankees are by far the most valuable team in Major League Baseball.

Forbes’ annual list of MLB team valuations was released Thursday, one week before Opening Day. While there are plenty of financial questions surrounding the league — especially after Diamond Sports Group essentially filed for bankruptcy earlier this year, putting the regional sports network model at even more risk than it already was — team values largely went up. On average, team values increased about 12% over last year. Revenue is up almost 8%, too.

The Yankees still top the list and are now worth $7.1 billion. That’s up 18% from last year. By comparison, the Dallas Cowboys were valued at about $8 billion last fall, which made them the most valuable sports franchise in the United States. The Golden State Warriors are worth $7 billion, which tops the NBA’s latest list. The New York Knicks are second at $6.1 billion, and the Los Angeles Lakers are third at $5.9 billion.

The Yankees are worth an estimated $7.1 billion, which is by far the highest in Major League Baseball.
The Yankees are worth an estimated $7.1 billion, which is by far the highest in Major League Baseball. (Mark Brown/Getty Images)

The Los Angeles Dodgers are the second-most valuable MLB team at $4.8 billion, which is also up 18% from last year. The Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs and San Francisco Giants round out the top five.

The Seattle Mariners, the 13th-most valuable franchise, grew the most. The team is valued at $2.2 billion, which is a 29% increase from last year. The team reached the playoffs last year, snapping a two-decade postseason drought, though the Mariners were swept in the ALDS.

The Miami Marlins are the least valuable team in Major League Baseball, worth $1 billion.

In total, five teams grew by at least 20%. There were seven teams that didn’t grow at all, and 10 teams actually operated at a loss. The New York Mets, the sixth-most valuable MLB franchise at $2.9 billion, operated at a loss of $138.5 million over the past year.