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Thursday, October 30, 2014  |   Madison, WI: 46.0° F  
THE SCONZ: Breaking news and commentary on campus, city and state politics
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A bang for your buck = Milwaukee Brewers
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Says a non-baseball fan at work: "So the Brewers are kicking ass now, huh?" That's an understatement. The Crew's murderous rampage, during which they've thoughtlessly slaughtered Cardinals, Cubs, Astros, Mets and Pirates, makes every cent of their $85 million payroll look like the best investment since the Yankees doubled the salary of a young pitcher named George Herman Ruth.

This certainly was not the case last year. Check out this chart, which matches team spending to outcomes to show which clubs are paying their players most effectively. According to the chart, the Brewers lost slightly more than you would expect for their payroll, similar to far better teams, including the Yankees, the Red Sox and the White Sox.

In contrast, there's a very good chance the Brewers are going to end the season having spent less per win than just about any other MLB team.

I just hope other taxpayer-funded ventures are this productive.

I wish the Brewers had stayed in the American League. Then they could have been my AL team. I guess I'd still root for the Phils if they faced the Crew in the World Series, but with the Brewers payroll, you'd assume that awkward event would probably only take place once in my lifetime. This year I'm genuinely scared of the likely Brewers showdown in the NLCS, in part because I fear they may be a better team, but also because I cringe at the thought of rooting against the impoverished underdog.

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