The Chicago Cubs filed for bankruptcy protection today, according to news reports. It appears that this is some sort of legal move to keep the Cubs from becoming part of the bankruptcy of their owner, the Tribune Corporation. The Cubs were not included in the Tribune Corporation’s December bankruptcy filing. It will make it easier for the team to be sold to the family of Joe Ricketts, founder of TD Ameritrade, for $845 million (including Wrigley Field).
The Cubs and Wrigley Field were purchased in 1981 by the tribune Corporation for $20.5 million. That works out to a 9.85% annualized return, or a 1,288% return over the 28 year period. Not a bad ROI, even if the Cubbies have not been very good on the field.