Tampa Bay Rays Payroll In 2015 + Contracts Going Forward
Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) Follow @stokes_hunter21
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David Price is gone, Ben Zobrist is gone. If you added up their 2 salaries of $20 MIL and $7.5 MIL respectively, it would have pole vaulted the Rays over $100 MIL in the upcoming season Instead they were traded for younger players, and their total team cash is listed at somewhere near $80 MIL for their budget.
Leading the charge on the cash earnings is Evan Longoria. While he has had a backloaded deal for years, his pact becomes a little more expensive this year. In 2015, the longtime 3B will make $13 MIL.
Longoria, who people are lumping into conversations with Kris Bryant right now, because of the Cubs pending decision to hold out their prize prospect. inked a deal just days into his service clock, and has a 15 Year/$144.5 MIL deal he is still working through.
For a Year to Year Breakdown For all of the Rays players salaries please visit here
Longo has only taken in $22 MIL of his dough so far heading into 2015.
Out of all the teams contracts, his deal is the only one to yield an 8 figure sum this year.
James Loney is 2nd in team payroll, and will earn $8.67 MIL.
In a Division where every team is over $120 MIL in projected team salary this year, it pegs Tampa Bay in a serious hole to start. The team has been so decent since the start of 2008 season (well over 100+ games over .500), that the team also hasn’t drafted high forever. That was a reason why they finally turned the corner as a franchise after a decade of struggling beforehand.
Also leaving the fold before 2015, were long time GM Andrew Friedman and skipper Joe Maddon. These guys might have left at the right time.
The Rays may return to cellar dwellers from this year on for the next several seasons. Sure the team has solid young pitching, but they have a pop gun offense. If Evan Longoria shows any sign of regression, Christmas will be cancelled real early in St. Petersburg.
Tampa Bay’s long term viability in the Major League are dependent on the new CBA placing more rules on high payroll and subsidized lower payroll clubs.
The Tropicana Field park is one of the two worst venue’s in the big leagues right now, and they simply can’t sustain enough revenue to compete.
Their current lease, which is pretty ironclad, has them staying in St. Petersburg until 2027. That is a long time away, but maybe the team can pursue looking to a new park by the turn of next decade. The 1st step in this process will be to see what the new CBA will look like prior to the 2017 year.
One of the best things that Andrew Friedman did was identifying great young players – and locking up players to 6 or 7 year deals in their 1st few years in the league. Contracts that also featured several one year club options, so if a player wasn’t as he was cracked up to be, the franchise could divulge themselves of the player.
James Shields, Evan Longoria, Wade Davis, Jeremy Hellickson, David Price and Matt Moore were all signed to deals like this. The latter is recovering from Tommy John Surgery, and Moore will earn $3 MIL this campaign, $5 MIL in 2016, and then holds Team Options of $7 MIL, $8 MIL in 2017, and $10 MIL in 2018. This was nearly identical to the Wade Davis deal until they traded him (along with Shields) for Wil Myers.
I wouldn’t be surprised if the club tries to trade veterans this season like James Loney, David DeJesus, Balfour, Cabrera, and John Jaso midway through the year, and in particular if they are not in playoff contention.
The club will need to shed more payroll with 8 players collecting Arbitration in 2016. Alex Cobb and Jake McGee lead that list, and should receive heavy raised from the $4 MIL and $3.55 MIL salaries they will make this season.
Rene Rivera, Kevin Jepsen, Logan Forsythe and Ernesto Frieri are the last 4 guys to have the status, but they will not make a massive difference to the payroll. Jepsen does make $3 MIL, and the club may walk away from him if he stands to make much more money in the 2016. Bet on him being traded if potential suitors come calling for Bullpen help
There is only $30.1 MIL in guaranteed money for 2016, yet these players will nearly double it if all bring in good campaigns. I wouldn’t look for the management spending anymore money on Free Agency anytime soon.
The Rays know all too well that losing for years may be the best way to get better quickly. While the team may not be competitive for a long time, it should still be good enough with the pitching to not be a total loss.
One has to wonder whether they could use Longoria as a trade chip. It may be the best time to part ways with the franchises all time leader in most categories as a hitter.
If he continues to decline, the money he is owed could be a problem. As it stand right this minute, his value hasn’t been diminished that extensively yet.
Whatever Tampa Bay decides to do, it will be a remarkable story if they can ever get back to making playoff spots again.
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Posted on March 22, 2015, in MLB Payroll and Contracts and tagged ben zobrist, chris archer, david price, desmond jennings, Drew Smyly, evan longoria, grant balfour, jake mcgee, james loney, james shields, jeff niemann, jeremy hellickson, john jaso, kevin keirmaier, logan forsythe, matt moore, Nick Franklin, Rene Rivera, Steven Souza, tampa bay rays payroll 2015, tropicana field, wade davis, wil myers. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Tampa Bay Rays Payroll In 2015 + Contracts Going Forward.