Top 5I don't have much of a problem with the top 5. Sternberg gets a nice bump because the team he inherited sucked for so many years and all those #1 picks paid off. Good drafting, great development. Moreno, the Boston trio, DeWitt....all well-deserved. I'd have them ranked pretty much the same way. The Steinbrenner family... I guess you have to, whether you like 'em or not. They sure have figured out ways to maximize revenue streams.
1. Henry/Werner/Lucchino, Boston Redsox
2. Arturo Moreno, LA Angels
3. William DeWitt, St. Louis Cardinals
4. Steinbrenner Family, NY Yankees
5. Stuart Sternberg, Tampa Bay Rays
26. Ted Lerner, Washington Nationals
27. Jeffrey Loria, Florida Marlins
28. David Glass, KC Royals
29. Tom Hicks, Texas Rangers
30. Peter Angelos, Baltimore Orioles
There's one name in the bottom 5 that really surprised me. Jeffrey Loria. Sure, he's not the most warm and cuddly guy and he torpedoed the Montreal franchise, but as the owner of the Marlins, he did reign over one WS title, which is vastly superior to most other owners. Including DeWitt, Moreno and Sternberg in the top 5. He also bullied his way into a new stadium on the horizon.
Ted Lerner's legacy is too short to really warrant his ranking, and SI seems to put the bonus skimming scheme that was lead by Jim Bowden squarely around the neck of Lerner. Yes, the team hasn't done much at all since being reborn in DC, but I don't think a tenure that began in only 2006 can be defined so quickly.
Glass is interesting in that he's a notorious tightwad, and while I root for a team that sweats hundred dollar bills, I can't say that fact in and of itself makes him a bad owner. He's a businessman with a Walmart pedigree, so he knows a thing or two about the income statement. His teams have made a boatload of money over the years despite not doing much (read: anything at all) on the field. As fans, we want our owners to be 'one of us', investing as we think we would if we were in their shoes. There's only one team that really does that. Glass operates his business with a firm grasp on margins and it shows. The Royals have been perennial cellar-dwellers for eons: The team has averaged 96 losses during Glass' 16 year tenure. Ninety-six. And they haven't made the playoffs in 24 years.
Aside from hoping that the Sox fall on their collective face, few things in baseball make me happier than watching Peter Angelos fail. An ultra-successful lawyer, Angelos took over in 1993 and proceeded to polish the lustre of the franchise with coarse sandpaper. Says SI.com: "Then Angelos began his notorious meddling, firing popular manager Davey Johnson, burning through another five managers, killing trades proposed by his GMs and stripping down one of baseball's proudest franchises. The O's haven't finished above .500 in 11 seasons since their last playoff appearance."