The Marlins beat the Cubs 5-2 last night, spoiling another good effort by Ryan Dempster. Dempster, who hurt himself with a throwing error in the game, is now 0-1 on the year despite having just a 1.33 ERA. The crushing blow was delivered by the Marlins’ Hanley Ramirez who blasted a 3-run, tie-breaking homer in the 8th inning off of Rafael Dolis. So what does that have to do with economics? This from the Chicago Tribune’s Paul Sullivan:
Ramirez’s blast to deep left set off a carnival-like monstrosity in center field that includes flying fish, flamingos and palm trees.
It was just another eccentricity in what is sure to be the game’s most controversial ballpark.
The sculpture cost approximately $2.5 million. I have to wonder: if the ballpark had been 100% privately-financed, would the “tacky” “monstrosity” have been included? Would private investors have believed that, all else equal, that sculpture would have generated marginal revenue of $2.5 million plus an acceptable return (in present value) over the life of the stadium? Or is this sculpture an example of what happens when folks spend other people’s money?