After the Orioles agreed with five players on 2018 contracts Friday, avoiding possible arbitration hearings, we can take another look at their current payroll.
According to Cot’s Baseball Contracts, the salary for the Orioles’ opening day roster was $147.7 million in 2016 and $164.3 million last season.
Before Friday, the Orioles had four guaranteed salaries on the books for 2018, with Chris Davis listed at $21.1 million, Adam Jones at $17.3 million, Mark Trumbo at $12.5 million and Darren O’Day at $9 million. That adds up to $59.9 million.
On Friday, they reached 2018 contract agreements with five of their seven arbitration-eligible players. They exchanged figures with two others.
* $16 million plus award incentives - Manny Machado
* $12 million - Zach Britton
* $7.5 team offer, player seeks 9.0 million - Jonathan Schoop
* $5.3 team offer, player seeks 6.225 million - Kevin Gausman
* $5.165 million plus incentives - Brad Brach
* $3.35 million - Tim Beckham
* $1.25 million - Caleb Joseph
The five players with agreements, and before they reach any possible incentives, will earn a combined $37.765 million.
Adding a deal with Gausman at the midpoint of the two exchanged figures brings him to $5.7625 million. Add Schoop doing the same and you get $8.25 million.
If you heard there would be no math, there is still a bit more. Adding the five agreements and projections for Gausman and Schoop brings us to $51.7775 million for those seven players.
That total then for the 11 players mentioned above is now at $111.6775 million.
The 2018 Orioles figure to include at least five players and probably several more that have not yet reached arbitration. They will earn at or near the major league minimum and are obviously still at the low-end of the major league pay scale.
This list includes Dylan Bundy, Trey Mancini, Mychal Givens, Miguel Castro and Richard Bleier. A partial list of others that are in this category includes Donnie Hart, Austin Hays, Jaycob Brugman, Anthony Santander and pretty much all of the young pitchers on the 40-man roster with little or no major league experience including Rule 5 pick Nester Cortes Jr. That group includes pitchers like Gabriel Ynoa, Mike Wright and others.
Adding several pre-arbitration players probably brings the club into the $120 million range, give or take a few million. There should be at least a few dollars left to pursue free agent pitchers to round out the rotation.
More Machado/Arizona talk: MLB Network spent some time discussing Machado and his possible pursuit by Arizona on Friday. One school of thought on the Diamondbacks’ side is that, while it would be tough for them to afford a big-dollar free agent, even like their own J.D. Martinez, maybe they can afford Machado for a year. That would allow a one-year run at the Dodgers in their division. Yesterday with this entry, we took at Arizona’s two best pitching prospects.