Believe it! St. Louis Ranks #8 in Best Cities for Professional Athletes to Play and Live

We thought it would be interesting to find out which are the best cities for a professional athlete to play and live.

With hockey and basketball seasons coming to a close, football rookies reporting to camps, legends signing new contracts, and baseball season well underway with the defending World Champion St. Louis Cardinals and defending American League Champions Texas Rangers in the race to lead their divisions in 2012, we thought now was the perfect time to determine where we would want to live, if given the same opportunities as today’s professionals athletes.

We couldn’t find this data, so the Anders Sports, Arts and Entertainment Group decided to take the project on ourselves. When we assist our clients, we know that professional athletes have the opportunity to evaluate several offers from organizations. Part of what plays into their decisions is not only the money, but the amenities of the cities in which they may choose not only to play, but also to live. In our analysis we looked at three areas that athletes might consider when looking at contracts to play in various cities:

  • Quality of life
  • Cost of living
  • State and local taxes

Interestingly, for cities with at least three professional sports teams, such as the St. Louis Cardinals, Blues and Rams, St. Louis ranks 8th!

If we based the analysis on cost of living only, we find St. Louis in the Number One Spot for the 19 cities with at least three professional sport teams. However, the impact of state and local taxes drops St. Louis to 37 out of 67 total cities examined in our study.

We looked at 67 cities with at least one professional sports team, as ranked by the American City List. This, combined with our quality of life, puts St. Louis in the eighth spot, which is still much higher than many cities you think would rank above St. Louis.

If you are like us, you may wonder if Albert Pujols considered any of these points when he decided to leave St. Louis and play in LA. Remember, it was not about the money. However, when it comes to quality of life, cost of living and taxes, LA doesn’t rank in the top 10 in any category analyzed, in fact, it ranks last in every category.

Cities with at least 3 Pro Teams (MLB, NBA, NHL, NFL)
Rank City
1 Denver, CO
2 Atlanta, GA
3 Dallas-Fort Worth, TX
4 Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN
5 Phoenix, AZ
6 Houston, TX
7 Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA
8 St. Louis, MO-IL
9 Tampa-St. Petersburg, FL
10 Pittsburgh, PA