This paper uses an extensive unique dataset to investigate the justification of government subsidies for minor league baseball teams and stadiums by measuring pecuniary gains in a local economy. Specifically, a dynamic panel data model incorporating 238 Metropolitan Statistical Areas that hosted affiliated or independent minor league teams between 1985 and 2006 shows that AAA teams, A+ teams, AA stadiums, and rookie stadiums are all associated with significant positive effects on the change in local per capita income. The presence of positive effects is strikingly different from decades of non-positive results at the major league level.
Agha, N. (2013). The economic impact of stadia and teams: The case of Minor League Baseball. Journal of Sports Economics, 14(3), 227-252. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1527002511422939