Saturday, March 20, 2004

2003 Reds finances may have finished in the black



By John Fay
The Cincinnati Enquirer

SARASOTA, Fla. - All those trades in July and August allowed the Reds to turn a profit of about $2.5 million last year, sources say.

That's significant because, according to the sources, the club had lost $27 million over the 2000, '01 and '02 seasons.

It also explains why general manager Dan O'Brien has not been mandated to trade players to trim the player payroll, which figures to come in at about $46 million.

Reds chief operating officer John Allen has declined to discuss the team's finances. O'Brien is adhering to a preset budget.

Former GM Jim Bowden often would go over budget at this time of year and assure ownership he would get it in line by year's end.

The Reds broke camp last year with a player payroll in the $59 million range. But the club made it known that it was trying to trade Scott Sullivan ($2.8 million) and Gabe White ($3.3 million) to get the budget in line.

With the majority of teams trying to trim their payroll, Bowden was not able to move Sullivan or White.

They finally were traded after Bowden was fired. Aaron Boone ($3.7 million), Scott Williamson ($1.6 million), Kelly Stinnett ($1.3 million) and Jose Guillen ($500,000) also were traded, and Felix Heredia ($600,000) was released.

Those transactions jettisoned $13.8 million in salary. But because the season was two-thirds over when the trades happened, the actual savings in salary was about $4.6 million.

There was cash in the Boone and Williamson deals to further help the Reds' bottom line.

The Reds made the moves after it became clear the team was not going to meet its attendance projection of 2.8 million. The club drew 2,355,259 for the first year in Great American Ball Park.

---

E-mail jfay@enquirer.com




NCAA TOURNAMENT (Special section)
XU: Musketeers fight back to advance
Patient Sato picks his spots, hits his shots
UC: Bobbitt hits game-winner
Daugherty: Little guy not so little in Tourney
ETSU's Smith plays big
Hicks gets job done as Bearcats' stealth sub
UK: 'Cats pull away in 2nd half to win
Hayes just misses triple-double
Murray St. gets taste of Illini's Big Ten
Cowboys get Sutton's angry halftime message
Wolfpack uses defense to subdue Ragin' Cajuns
Pacific waves goodbye to 5th seed Providence
Maryland sets sights on 'Cuse's sharpshooter
Calhoun could do without matchup
NCAA Tournament at a glance
It's not exactly home, but it's close for the Buckeyes
Tournament chase is all about class
Team by team in the women's field
WNIT: Scoring drought ends MU's season
Victory sends Wilmington to title game

REDS / BASEBALL
Reds pitcher lost for season
2003 Reds finances may have finished in the black
Inside Reds camp
Lidle in Opening Day hunt
Aching Nixon, Garciaparra out of action for Red Sox

BENGALS / NFL
Bengals, Sapp close in on deal
It's official: Keyshawn, Parcells reunited

PREP SPORTS
MND plays nation's top-ranked team for state title
C-J storms into Division I title game
Colonels discover that the 3 is king
Royals win one for the ages
Mason Co. pushed to the 3-OT brink
Prep sports results, schedules

TURFWAY PARK
Silver Minister, Bejarano aim to play spoiler

MORE SPORTS HEADLINES
Maruyama moves ahead
Sports digest
Sports this weekend on TV, radio

Return to Reds front page...