History was made three years ago when the Los Angeles Dodgers sold for $2 billion. Since the sale, new ownership has not been afraid to spend money on the team, posting the largest payroll, by far, entering the 2015 MLB season.
The Dodgers will spend approximately $60 million more than any other team, with an Opening Day payroll of $276.3 million. Four players on the team will make more than $20 million in 2015, including the club’s top two pitchers. Clayton Kershaw is owed $30 million this year after winning the Cy Young award in three of the last four years. Zack Greinke has pitched to an ERA of less than 2.71 in each of his first two years with Los Angeles, and he’ll make $23 million this season.
The New York Yankees are used to having the No.1 payroll in baseball, but they’ll settle for No.2 this year at $216.4 million. Five players on the Yankees are set to make more than $21 million this year, including Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira, C.C. Sabathia and Masahiro Tanaka. A-Rod and Teixeira have missed a combined 466 games in the last two seasons, while Sabathia and Tanaka started just 28 total games in 2014.
Despite playing in the same city as the Yankees, the New York Mets rank 17 spots behind them at No.19 overall. They have a $105.9 million payroll, spending less than $9 million on all but three of their players. David Wright is their highest paid star at $20 million this season, though he hit a career-low eight home runs last season.
The Washington Nationals are the World Series favorites, sporting the No.3 payroll. They gave Max Scherzer a $210 million contract in the offseason, making him the highest-paid free agent. The World Series favorites are paying seven players at least $11 million, including four-fifths of their starting rotation. Stephen Strasburg will make $7.4 million this year.
Having a high payroll doesn’t necessarily mean a team will be in contention for the playoffs. The Philadelphia Phillies are one of just nine teams with a payroll of more than $140 million, but they begin the year with the league’s worst World Series odds.
Below is a look at the team payrolls for the 2015 MLB season, according to figures compiled by spotrac.com.
1) Los Angeles Dodgers: $276,373,625
2) New York Yankees: $216,472,857
3) Washington Nationals: $176,461,157
4) San Francisco Giants: $172,821,277
5) Detroit Tigers: $172,742,250
6) Boston Red Sox: $172,666,066
7) Los Angeles Angels: $154,832,483
8) Texas Rangers: $142,733,540
9) Philadelphia Phillies: $142,301,500
10) Toronto Blue Jays: $126,566,300
11) Seattle Mariners: $123,225,842
12) Cincinnati Reds: $121,387,587
13) St. Louis Cardinals: $120,574,000
14) Chicago White Sox: $118,603,177
15) Baltimore Orioles: $118,052,333
16) Chicago Cubs: $115,579,383
17) Kansas City Royals: $115,364,525
18) San Diego Padres: $108,387,033
19) New York Mets: $105,922,938
20) Milwaukee Brewers: $104,162,500
21) Minnesota Twins: $102,560,860
22) Colorado Rockies: $100,601,130
23) Pittsburgh Pirates: $89,540,999
24) Cleveland Indians: $87,946,599
25) Oakland Athletics: $86,011,666
26) Atlanta Braves: $84,493,959
27) Arizona Diamondbacks: $80,770,333
28) Tampa Bay Rays: $74,294,232
29) Houston Astros: $70,664,200
30) Miami Marlins: $69,031,500