Economics: The Business of Baseball

Unit Overview

"Baseball is too much of a sport to be a business, and too much of a business to be a sport."

- Phil Wrigley, Owner of the Chicago Cubs from 1932 to 1977

In today's game, the business of baseball is readily apparent. Player salaries, ticket prices, league structure, team ownership, and the players' union all figure into the game's "corporate structure." Yet, baseball has been a business in its organization, inner-workings, and capitalist goals since the 19th century. The game evolved during a period of big business, great industrial growth, and technological change in this country. In this unit, students will explore economic laws and concepts associated with the national pastime.

About The Curriculum

All of the lessons and activities that you will find below have been prepared to accompany Economics: The Business of Baseball. You will find that the curriculum is organized into three levels: Level 1 for elementary school students, Level 2 for middle school students, and Level 3 for high school students. Feel free to pick and choose lessons from multiple levels if you feel that your students are ready for a challenge or would benefit from a review.

Within each level you will find both pre-visit lessons and post-visit lessons. We strongly encourage you to use these materials before your visit or videoconference. We've found that students understand and learn so much more if they are prepared before their Hall of Fame experience.

Click on the links to view Adobe Acrobat documents, which you can easily print or save for later use. All lessons are aligned with Common Core State Standards.

Level 1 - Rookie
Elementary Level Overview & Table of Contents
Lesson 1 (Pre-Visit) Ballpark Goods and Services
Lesson 2 (Pre-Visit) Supply and Demand
Lesson 3 (Pre-Visit) Ball Park Prices
Lesson 4 On-Site Visit - or - Videoconference
Lesson 5 (Post-Visit) Competition: On the Field and On the Market

Level 2 - Intermediate
Intermediate Level Overview & Table of Contents
Lesson 1 (Pre-Visit) Creating a Market for Baseball
Lesson 2 (Pre-Visit) Big Business of the Big Leagues
Lesson 3 (Pre-Visit) The Cost of Being a Fan
Lesson 4 On-Site Visit - or - Videoconference
Lesson 5 (Post-Visit) Big League Salaries

Level 3 - Advanced
Advanced Level Overview & Table of Contents
Lesson 1 (Pre-Visit) Buy Me Some Peanuts and Crackerjacks
Lesson 2 (Pre-Visit) Take Me Out to the Ballgame, If You Can Afford It!
Lesson 3 (Pre-Visit) Measuring the Cost of Being a Fan
Lesson 4 On-Site Visit - or - Videoconference
Lesson 5 (Post-Visit) Factors of Sports Production 

 

Participating in a Videoconference?

Level 1&2

Click here for a copy of the Business of Baseball Videoconference checklist. In order to complete the activity that accompanies the videoconference you will need access to the following documents. Instructions for preparation and use of these documents can be found in the program's checklist.

1920s World Series Program

1940s World Series Progam

1960s World Series Program

1980s World Series Program

2000s World Series Program

Economics Activity Worksheet

 

Level 3
Click here for a copy of the Business of Baseball level 3 Videoconference checklist.