Top Ten Stat of The Week Special Trade Edition! Boston Red Sox: Payroll 2013

Thursday, Aug.30/2012

As the longest-serving Red Sox Offensive Player under contract, Dustin Pedroia needs to return to his MVP like form of a few years back for Boston to be in contention next year.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer): – In one fell swoop, the Boston Red Sox went from a team with no payroll flexibility at all for years to come, to a team that only has 4 players under contract for 57.2 Million Dollars next year.  It is actually around 43 Million Dollars for Dustin Pedroia (10 MIL), John Lackey ,(16 MIL) John Lester (11.6 MIL) and Clay Buchholz (5.8 MIL.)  Now since they are paying about 15 Million to the Dodgers as part of the trade it takes the total up to about 57 Million.  So how does the team look going forward?  Not that bad actually.  The have about 25 Pre-Arbitration to Arbitration Eligible Players to re-sign.  A lot of them are under club control or will not fetch that much of a boost in pay.  Jacoby Ellsbury will probably get a bump from the 8 Million he received this year and Jarrod Saltalamacchia will also be due a raise from the 2.5 Million in 2012 with his breakout power year.  Daniel Bard is a “Super 2” Arb Eligible Player and should not be that hard to resign considering  his ineffective year.  The most pressing thing to do is to resolve the David Ortiz matter and then to grab a couple of free agent pitchers and a power hitting First baseman or an outfielder.

Judging from my best estimate, it looks like the Boston Red Sox will have about an 100-110 Million Dollars for all of their Arbitration players, plus the guys already signed.  This leads me to David Ortiz.  He should be given a 2 or 3 year contract as soon as humanly possible at 15-16 Million Dollars a Year.  He was the only player in the AL to have an OPS over 1 still going into tonight.  Yes he has been hurt, but ‘Big Papi’ is not finished in the MLB.  Yes he will be 37 heading into next year but he has been the best DH in the AL over the last 3 years.  Ortiz had said earlier this year-that he would be open to playing for other teams so the brass better make him feel wanted or he will walk! He genuinely likes Pedroia so I am sure Ortiz could be persuaded to come back.  You have to at least find this out early as it will let you know how to proceed on the Free Agent Market.


For Part 1 of the Trade Breakdown: The LA Dodgers 2013 Top Ten Payroll click here .

Zack Greinke and Shaun Marcum were both teammates in Milwaukee to start the year and are Free Agents after the year. Boston should go after these top pitchers as Marcum has AL East experience and Greinke is a former AL CY Young Award Winner.

The Red Sox should stock up on  pitching.  I would go after Shaun Marcum and Zack Greinke if I were them.  Greinke has ace stuff and Shaun Marcum has pitched in the AL East before with Toronto.  You will probably have to pay them a combined 35 Million a year, but this is what you must pay most good pitchers on the FA Market.  With John Lackey still hurt, you will not be able to count on him.  Adding two pitchers to Clay Buccholz and Jon Lester makes sense.  Your 5th starter can be Felix Doubront who has impressed for much of his rookie year with a 10-6 record.  If Lackey comes back, you could think about trading him if he has any success at all.  Their bullpen looks strong with Daniel Bard going back in with Andrew Bailey, Craig Breslow and Alfredo Aceves in the relief rotation.  You add in Scott Atchison, Andrew Miller, Franklin Morales and Rich Hill and you are looking at a great, relatively inexpensive bullpen that should be solid for years to come.

The Outfield needs some work.  I would try to work out a deal with Cody Ross.  Ross has hit 19 HRs, driven in 67 RBI in just 360 AB over his 99 games this campaign. Give him a multi-year deal in the 5 Million Range and let him play LF.  Ryan Sweeney, Ryan Kalish and Daniel Nava are spare outfielders at best.  If I were the Sox, I would go after Nick Swisher as my top priority.  Not only is he a RF, but can also play first base.  These are both needs for you.  If you sign Swisher, you can have an average hitting first baseman like James Loney if you so need.  If Swisher is not brought in, I would go to Ryan Ludwick next.  The key is to have 2 out of 3 positions of 1b/LF/RF have strong power hitters so that you can live with a player with just a great average from the other position.  Again, this is why it is so important to re-sign David Ortiz.  He covers you at the DH spot.  In a perfect world, Sox could get away by paying the DH/RF/LF and 1B a total of 45-50 Million.  This could be Ortiz  (15-17), Swisher (15-16), Ross ( (5) and maybe you can re-sign Loney to a 2 yrs at 9-10 Million per year. He is a .280 Career Hitter and Lefty at Fenway.   Keep Loney at the same level of years with Ortiz.  In the end, Boston would be right back up at the 170 Million Dollar Mark as this year, but have a stronger lineup. 

With Dustin Pedroia, Mike Aviles and Will Middlebrooks, you have 3 out of the 4 spots covered in the infield with Pedro Ciriaco/Danny Valencia as back up options. Had the trade not happened, you would be at the same Payroll as this year going into 2013, however Beckett and Crawford are huge question marks to be productive again.  At least you have changed the chemistry in the locker room sand have become younger.  You need Pedroia and Ellsbury to play up to their regular numbers and need Lester and Buccholz to take the reins as ace pitchers.  That John Lackey contract is still killing them at 16 Million per year until the end of the 2014 year.  There is promise for the Beantowners.  The Yankees have their own age and salary cap problems and one of these days the Tampa Bay Rays will fall out of contention.  Even with improved Baltimore and Toronto in the division, the Red Sox still have ALL-Star Caliber talent and could flex their muscle to the rest of the AL.

Top Ten Boston Red Sox Payroll 2013 in Millions

1.   John Lackey SP  16.0

1A.  Not a player but Cash Compensation to the LAD 12.0 Million +22.5%  to complete the trade for 2.7 Million Additional on the Luxury Tax Hit  (14.7 Million Total.)

2.  Jon Lester SP  11.6

3.  Dustin Pedroia 2b 10.0

4.  Clay Buccholz SP 5.8

If the Red Sox can receive anything from John Lackey in 2013, this would be a world of good to the team.  This column of players and the payout to the LA Dodgers in 2013= 57.1 Million Dollars.

Arbitration Eligible and what they earned in Millions for 2012

5.  Jacoby Ellsbury  CF  8.0

6.  Andrew Bailey RP 3.9

7..  Jarrod Saltalamacchia  C 2.5

8.  Daniel Bard Super (2)

9.  Charlie Morton SP 2.4***

10. Craig Breslow RP  2.0

***Has not pitched in the Major Leagues This year

These 5 players made 16.8 Million in 2012.  Lets give them a 50% Raise collectively.  Salty will surely be in the 5-7 Million Dollar Range and Ellsbury should see a small raise.  For this category lets peg it at 25.2 Million and 82.3 Million overall.  They may decide to cut Morton who was not with the big club as of Aug.31/2012.

Other Arbitration Eligible Players in Millions:

11. Ryan Sweeney OF 1.8

12. Alfredo Aceves RP 1.2

13. Mike Aviles INF 1.2

14. Andrew Miller RP 1.0

15. Franklin Morales RP 850,000

16. Rich Hill RP 725,000

These 6 players made about 6.8 Million in 2012 and lets add 50% for them and make it 10.2 Million for 2013 and 92.5 Million Overall.

Pre-Arbitration Eligible Players:

17. Mark Melancon RP 521,000

18. Danny Valencia 3B 515,000

19. Scott Atchison RP 510,000

20. Pedro Beato RP 487,500

21. Felix Doubront SP 484,000

22. Ryan Kalish LF 483,000.

23.  Chris Carpenter RP 482,000

24.  Ryan Lavarnway C 414,000

These 8 players should make another 4 Million in 2013 to equal 96.1 Million total.

Entry Level Contracts-League Minimum to TBD:

25.  Pedro Ciriaco SS/3B

26.  Daniel Nava LF

27. Junichi Tazawa RP

28. Will Middlebrooks 3B

With cash bonuses available for these players, call it another 4 Millon to equal 100 Million Dollar Threshold.

Unrestricted Free Agents After 2012 and Their 2012 salary in Millions:

29.  David Ortiz DH 14.6

30.  Daisuke Matsuzaka SP 10.3

31.  James Loney 1B 6.4

32.  Cody Ross OF 3.0

33.  Aaron Cook SP 1.5

34.  Vicente Padilla SP/RP 1.0

Out of these 6 Free Agents, I am going to say they bring back Ortiz for 15 Million, Ross for 4 Million and 1 of Cook or Padilla for 1 Million.  That would make 120 Million overall before you need a 1b/RF/LF/2  SP.

For Part 1 of the Trade Breakdown: The LA Dodgers 2013 Top Ten Payroll click here .

John Lackey is still due 32 Million over the 2013 and 2014 Seasons from the Red Sox. Will he be able to contribute at all coming back from injury?

*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ***


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About chuckbooth3023

I played competitive baseball until 18 years old and had offers to play NCAA Division 1 University Baseball at Liberty University. Post-concussion symptoms from previous football and baseball head injuries forced me to retire by age 19. After two nearly made World Record Attempts in 2008, I set a New World Record by visiting all 30 MLB Parks (from 1st to last pitch) in only 24 Calendar Days in the summer 0f 2009. In April of 2012, I established yet another new GWR by visiting all 30 Parks in only 23 Calendar Days! You can see the full schedule at the page of the . In 2015, I watched 224 MLB Games, spanning all 30 MLB Parks in 183 Days. Read about that World Record Journey at

Posted on August 30, 2012, in The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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