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Mariners Find Hope In Big Losses Armstrong Claims New Park, Young Talent May Ease Deficit

The Seattle Mariners lost $20.23 million last season, but club president Chuck Armstrong is optimistic about the club’s future.

The 1995 fiscal year loss was 34.6 percent greater than the 1994 loss of $15.03 million, although income rose strongly, according to an earnings report released Tuesday.

It’s the largest loss since current owners acquired the team in 1992.

Sales from tickets, concessions, advertising and parking rose from 1994’s $15.65 million to $27.28 million in 1995 - a direct result of the team’s late drive that produced its first A.L. West championship.

Combined with higher sales from the major league’s central fund and from local broadcasting, total operating sales rose to $39.26 million.

But players salaries, postseason costs and national broadcasting costs also grew, boosting total expenses to $54.47 million, a 55 percent increase from 1994’s $34.97 million. An additional $5.02 million was tagged onto that figure for player signing bonuses.

Armstrong said experiences elsewhere have shown that attendance and revenues have increased dramatically where new ballparks have been built. A new ballpark for the Mariners is to be completed in 1999.

“These teams have turned it around both financially and on the field,” Armstrong said. “We are optimistic about our future… . The new ballpark provides opportunity to bring it all together.”

Total losses for the current owners through 1995 are $57 million - $5 million in 1992 and $17 million in 1993 added to the ‘94-95 losses.

Tags: baseball