Teams with the lowest player salaries – News Block

With so much focus on MLB teams spending big money, we’re curious about the lowest payrolls in MLB in 2023. Of course, some of the teams with the highest payrolls this season have to pay a luxury tax, and in some cases, those teams have dramatically underperformed.

But how are the teams with the lowest player salaries in the MLB doing this season?

Ranking of the 10 lowest MLB payrolls in 2023

If some of baseball’s biggest spenders have been disappointments, does that mean the teams with the lowest payrolls in MLB in 2023 are exceeding expectations? Well, that’s not exactly how things have played out this season.

However, it’s quite interesting to see how teams that haven’t spent a lot of money have fared this year. Let’s take a closer look at the 10 teams with the lowest payrolls in MLB in 2023.

Diamondbacks – $115.5 million

Even with a payroll of more than $100 million, the D’Backs are in the bottom third when it comes to spending. Keep in mind that some of that is dead money after they parted ways with Madison Bumgarner earlier in the year.

However, Arizona’s young players have stood out for them, helping the D’Backs lead the NL West for a good chunk of the season and putting Arizona in position to make the postseason.

Marlins – $96.4 million

The Marlins always seem to be near the bottom in terms of spending. The franchise has a strange aversion to spending. However, Miami was a bit more aggressive last winter.

The Marlins have also made some smart trades, putting them in a position to compete in 2023 after spending a long time near the bottom of the NL East pecking order. It’s been an amazing change of pace, especially for the people of South Florida.

Nationals – $94 million

It’s rebuilding time in Washington, which is why the Nationals are near the bottom of the roster. If they had been smart enough to let Stephen Strasburg go to free agency like Bryce Harper, Anthony Rendon and others did, Washington’s player salaries would be even lower.

Outside of Strasburg and Patrick Corbin, no one on Washington’s roster is making that much money. The only question is when the Nats will start supplementing their young roster with a little more spending.

Royals – $93 million

Even with a payroll of $93 million, the Royals must be disappointed with how this season has gone. Kansas City has a bit of money dedicated to veteran players, but it couldn’t muster the right mix of veterans and youngsters.

The Royals are one of those teams that can occasionally produce a winning streak after years of rebuilding. But they have failed to make a step forward in their current rebuilding project this season.

Reds – $92.5 million

The Reds don’t need to spend a lot of money on the young players they brought to the big leagues this year. A group of rookies led by Elly De La Cruz have turned Cincinnati into a contender in the NL Central despite having one of the lowest payrolls in baseball.

Ironically, Cincinnati’s payroll is higher than you might think because Joey Votto and Wil Myers are pocketing a big chunk of it despite not contributing as much in 2023.

Guardians: $91.3 million

It’s a little surprising that the Guardians have the lowest payroll in the AL Central considering they’ve been the best team in the division for a long time. In the past seven years, Cleveland has won four division titles and made the playoffs five times.

The Guards always seem to have young pitching on the way, which allows them to trade high-salary players and stay competitive. That’s been the formula again in 2023, and while Cleveland is locked in a close race, the Guardians have been impressive this year considering their payroll.

Lightning – $76.6 million

The Rays have pretty much turned the year-over-year competition with a low payroll down to a science. They have always been careful about how they spend their money and have not been afraid to trade players when they start making too much money. But Tampa can get away with it because the team’s farm system is always packed with players ready to make it to the big leagues and contribute.

While the Rays have cooled off considerably since their incredible start to the season, their limited spending shouldn’t stop them from making the playoffs in 2023.

Pirates – $76.3 million

Low payrolls are nothing new for Pittsburgh, and 2023 is no exception. Most of the veterans on Pittsburgh’s roster and the players who are past their prime and don’t make a lot of money anymore.

To be fair, the Pirates have assembled a promising group of young players who have started making noise this season. However, with some injuries contributing, the Pirates haven’t had enough to stay in the playoff picture. But to their credit, they’ve performed far better in 2023 than you’d expect for the third-lowest payroll in baseball.

Orioles – $67.8 million

It’s absolutely amazing what the Orioles have accomplished this season with the second lowest payroll in baseball. Baltimore’s roster is made up almost entirely of young players who aren’t making a lot of money with some veterans mixed in.

That’s what happens when you spend years rebuilding from the bottom up and assemble a large farm system that has multiple players. Despite the lack of spending, the Orioles have a great chance to win the AL East and make a run in October.

Athletics – $61.4 million

Obviously, it would be shocking to see anyone other than the A’s have the lowest payroll in baseball because they are destined to be among the worst teams in baseball history. Oakland has always had a reputation for trading star players when they start making too much money in salary arbitration.

But a payroll of just over $60 million is a joke. In fact, the whole team has been a joke. Ultimately, the A’s will be lucky to win 50 games, putting them in exclusive company for all the wrong reasons.

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