Projecting Payroll – Boston Edition

This may be a bit premature, but seeing as many fans are reaching critical mass with their frustration over JD Drew all while the Sox have had an infusion of youth and productivity from a pair of speedy, exciting outfielders (thanks, Coco and Jacoby!) and an injury to their oft-on-the-block mercurial left fielder, it seems like a good time to take stock of the Sox’ commitments for next season.  Lots of numbers after the jump, offered without comment.

Let the hypothetical opt-out options and free agent signing discussions begin!

[ED: Some numbers may be incorrect, our research is as in-depth as the web allows without compromising our ability to do our day job.  Also, this is not meant to be a perfect projection, there are dollars that are based on incentives that are left alone, and there are team options that aren’t yet exercised.  Please use this is a basis for discussion, not as a Rosetta Stone. If there are mistakes, please make a note in the comments and we will update accordingly.]

Players at or near Major League minimum ($390K in 2008):

  • Jon Lester
  • Jacoby Ellsbury
  • Dustin Pedroia
  • Jonathan Papelbon (earned $450,500 in ’07)
  • Manny Delcarmen
  • Clay Buchholz

Total: $2.34M


  • Kevin Youkilis (earned $424,500 in 07)
  • Javier Lopez (earned $402,500 in 07)
  • Kyle Snyder (earned $535,000 in 07)

Total: Unknown

Locked in:

  • Coco Crisp ($4.75m)
  • Josh Beckett ($9.5m + incentives)
  • Jason Varitek ($10m)
  • Julio Lugo (~$9m)
  • JD Drew ($14m + incentives)
  • Manny Ramirez ($20m + incentives)
  • David Ortiz ($12.5m)
  • Hideki Okajima ($1.25m)
  • Daisuke Matsuzaka ($8m + incentives)
  • Tim Wakefield (team option) ($4m + incentives)
  • Alex Cora ($2m plus incentives based on starts)
  • Craig Hansen ($700k)
  • Julian Tavarez (team option) ($3.1m)
  • Edgar Renteria ($2.66M)

Total: $98.8M $101.46M

Coming off the books:

  • Curt Schilling ($13m)
  • Mike Lowell ($9.025m)
  • Mike Timlin ($2.925m)
  • Eric Gagne ($8.1m, $5.6M paid by the Red Sox)
  • Doug Mirabelli ($750k-$1.65m depending on incentives)
  • Bobby Kielty (Signed Minor League deal with the Sox, numbers unknown)
  • Eric Hinske ($2.8125m)
  • Royce Clayton ($1.5m)
  • Matt Clement ($9.5m)
  • Brendan Donnelly ($1.425m)

Total: $46.7m

39 comments… add one
  • There is also money owed Renteria, I believe $5M.

    SF September 12, 2007, 3:32 pm
  • So if you go by that data the Sox would be at (Roughly because who knows what arbitration brings) $105 million? That’s pretty impressive considering they would only really need to go the free agent route for some bullpen help, 3B and backup catcher.

    John - YF (Trisk) September 12, 2007, 3:33 pm
  • They will certainly need a starter to replace Schill if they let him walk, maybe two if they let Mirabelli go and Wakefield decides he can’t go on without Dougie.

    SF September 12, 2007, 3:36 pm
  • Great work, SF. It’s actually much better than I thought, money wise. There is no way that the they’re aren’t in on the A-Rod sweepstakes if this is truly the case. Then, maybe a back of the rotation starter and bullpen guys.
    We should do a New York version as well for comparisons sake.

    Brad September 12, 2007, 3:38 pm
  • I was thinking they would promote from within to replace Schilling.

    John - YF (Trisk) September 12, 2007, 3:39 pm
  • I will gladly do the Yankees version. I will have it up ASAP.

    John - YF (Trisk) September 12, 2007, 3:40 pm
  • Youk may make a few mill in arb, that’s not insignificant, but I imagine Lopez and Snyder will either be released, offered arb and traded, or signed pre-emptively. Snyder is a true spare part, Lopez a LOOGY that probably can be replaced from within, maybe Breslow?

    SF September 12, 2007, 3:40 pm
  • Right, Trisk – Buck takes Schill’s spot. The wild card might be a Wake retirement.

    SF September 12, 2007, 3:41 pm
  • 2008 rotation of beckett,matsuzaka, lester, wakefield and buccholtz, or a FA? they need the begin the search for a young power bat as mannys contract expires.

    Ric September 12, 2007, 3:41 pm
  • Right, the starter and 3B will be pricey. Unless…I’m cool with Lowrie at 3B (even as they prob aren’t), but I think it’s a mistake to go in with Buchholz and Lester as the back of the rotation without a safety net. I don’t think Masterson is ready yet.
    But anyone else think they need another RH bat? And why not drop some cash on Andruw Jones? They can afford it and he can play any OF position. Plus, he’s bound to bounce back.
    (A-Rod makes sense, I just can’t see it happening.)

    Pete September 12, 2007, 3:43 pm
  • Also, Buck Lester (great porn name!) shouldn’t be throwing more than 200 innings each next year.

    Pete September 12, 2007, 3:46 pm
  • arod v.2008 is the wet dream as he is offensively comparable to 2 players. id love to have the offense in the infield and be able to have the athletic (mannyless) outfield.

    Ric September 12, 2007, 3:46 pm
  • Where would Andruw Jones fit? We’ve already got a logjam with Coco, Ells, Manny and Drew.
    I wonder if Atlanta can’t sign Texeira to an extension, they’d be open to trading him for a CF and a pitcher (Coco and Lester, maybe?). Pitching has been there biggest hole, and with Andruw likely walking…
    I don’t like Buchholz and Lester at the back end of the rotation. I want Curt back. He’s as good as any other FA pitcher (I think, I don’t have time to research), and he only wants to play one more year. It’s a no brainer for me.

    Tyrel SF September 12, 2007, 3:54 pm
  • Verducci with a good point on Matsuzaka in the SI article of the sidebar:
    6 days rest: 2.08 ERA
    5 days rest: 4.01 ERA
    4 days rest: 5.29 ERA (unique to America)

    Pete September 12, 2007, 3:56 pm
  • I’m already on record as saying Jacoby needs at least another half season in AAA to develop his power as well as his approach against LHP.
    So get Jones to play CF with Coco becoming the 4th OF who rotates in as necessary. Then Andruw is insurance for what happens next year with Drew/Coco/Ells and when Manny leaves.

    Pete September 12, 2007, 4:01 pm
  • If they are in fact around the 105 to 115 mark, I’m sure it’s going to be somebody. Though, I think they’re probably going to give Moss a shot at first for most of the winter before doing anything there.

    Brad September 12, 2007, 4:05 pm
  • Jeez, if we had Youkilis, Pedroia, A-Rod AND Schilling on the team, we’d officially have to concede the fact that we’re the most disliked team ever assembled! ha.

    Brad September 12, 2007, 4:07 pm
  • No, we’d have to get Sheff too, Brad!

    SF September 12, 2007, 4:13 pm
  • True, Brad, we would just have to dream for a Bonds/Sheffield team.

    LocklandSF September 12, 2007, 4:14 pm
  • He has only had 1 or 2 starts with 6 days rest, so I wouldnt take much creedence in those numbers.

    Sam-YF September 12, 2007, 4:16 pm
  • Sam, I would really think that it has something to do with it, for now. Probably not at the time of those starts, but for now, I think the day’s rest would serve him perfectly.
    Without sounding like I’m making excuses for him, he’s clearly becoming taxed in this new season. Depending on the outcome of this weekend’s series, I would really have to think that Francona skips him for one start, then limits him to maybe five innings in his last start and hope he gets a nice second-wind going into the ALDS.
    Just my thoughts.
    Much like the ‘Wang sucks’ thread, I wouldn’t touch Sheffield with a twenty foot pole.
    Boston’s payroll, if it is in fact near this amount, is very, very managable for them, and if they didn’t land a superstar this year (and a young one please), I’d be pretty upset.
    I’d actually love to see them go after a stud young catcher somewhere. That time seems to be upon us.

    Brad September 12, 2007, 4:25 pm
  • Here’s my completely uninformed and unwanted advice for the Sox:
    1. Buchholz replaces Schilling in the rotation: Beckett-Matsuzaka-Wake-Lester-Buck.
    2. Pick up Tavarez’s option as the backup if Lester or Buchholz goes down/struggles. He’s clearly a better No. 5 than most anyone else in the league.
    3. Let Mirabelli walk; replace him with Cash. Pray real hard George Kottaras gets his crap together.
    4. Get rid of Lopez (he could have some trade value) and bring in Breslow, who’s been impressive in limited action over the past two years.
    5. Go after A-Rod hard and, if you get him, either a. trade Manny to give Ellsbury a shot, or b. keep Manny just to see what happens with both of them in the lineup and give Ellsbury more time in AAA.
    6. Let Hinske go, and re-sign Kielty as the 4th OF, with Moss as the backup 1B.
    7. Re-sign Timlin for very cheap, if he’ll take it and doesn’t retire. He’s been solid enough this season to be worth keeping for $1m-$1.5m next year.
    8. Not sure what the bullpen field looks like for free agency, but presumably the Sox will be looking there, unless they can convince Gagne that he really really likes pitching the eighth.
    I would hate to lose Mike Lowell, but it’s hard to argue for keeping him when you have the chance to sign the best player of our generation. Unless A-Rod wants to move to short? Ha.

    Paul SF September 12, 2007, 4:29 pm
  • Craig Breslow could be a huge mistake as a LOOGY. His ceiling is probably as an Alan Embree-type. Better against LHHs (though not SO good as to be a smoking gun against a Travis Hafner in a tough situation), but on the flipside, not entirely useless against RHHs.
    Breslow actually had a lower OPS against vs. RHHs this season (.702) than against LHHs (.784). His minor league stats historically have him as being equally effective against lefties and righties, though his (quite limited) ML data could make you think of him as a LOOGY candidate.
    Muchos gracias to Jeff Sackmann and
    —Paul, why would you replace ‘Belli with Cash? 3.0 RC/G for ‘Belli last season (awful) vs. 2.5 RC/G for Cash in his BEST season (2004 in Toronto). Kevin Cash is a truly awful hitter, while ‘Belli just provides cringe-worthy moments while occasionally making meaningful contributions.

    QuoSF September 12, 2007, 4:38 pm
  • Brad I was referring to the 6 days or more rest stat. Its 2 starts compared with 10 or more for the other two situations it really doesnt tell me much. I do think he could be having trouble without the extra rest but as others have stated he doesnt seem tired to me. His fastball still has life, i think it could be other issues. He certainly doesnt have the swagger he had on the mound that ive seen in footage from japan.

    Sam-YF September 12, 2007, 4:40 pm
  • Would SFs actually be comfortable with a rotation of Beckett, Matsuzaka, Wake, Lester, and Bucholz?
    Im not forming a judgement either way just asking?
    I dont know how i feel about the Yankees having 2-3 rookies/second year pitchers in their rotation next year if it happens. Even with my excitement for Hughes, Kennedy, and Joba.

    Sam-YF September 12, 2007, 4:44 pm
  • Heh, interesting points about Belli/Cash, Quo. I’m just tired of Belli, though he’s actually been very (for him) productive this season. He seems to have regained his power stroke (HR/every 20 ABs or so). The Sox desperately need a backup that can hit and isn’t about to start collecting Social Security.
    I just don’t see Lopez as being any better than what Breslow could be. Lopez walks a TON, and his numbers show he’s nearly as lucky as Romero was, and Romero was DFA’d for it.

    Paul SF September 12, 2007, 4:45 pm
  • I hear ya, Sam. I’d be pretty nervous about it myself, but which of them deserves not to be there? Lester, possibly, but if he pitches the rest of the year like he has the last few starts, he’s there to stay. It does feel like a downgrade to have Wakefield/Lester/Buchholz instead of Schilling/Wakefield/Lester

    Paul SF September 12, 2007, 4:48 pm
  • Sam, just my personal opinion, but I feel fine with putting Lester in the 4 or 5 slot to start the season, assuming the changes we saw in his last start are for real. I think he’s physically ready for the demands of a full long season of starting.
    With Buchholz, even though one of them was a no-hitter, we still only have 2 ML starts to go on. I wouldn’t mind having some insurance there, even if it’s just Batshit in a swing role or Matt Clement on a Kerry Wood-type deal. (He got what, $1.5M guaranteed from the Cubs this season?)
    Paul, my response about Breslow had more to do with the assertion of him being a LOOGY (which is not what your point was), that I think SF brought up. A good idea, I just don’t think he’s well suited for it. And he’s had his own control problems in the past as well.
    In short: I like him, but expecting him to be the guy against HGHiambi, Hafner, Sizemore, whomever, probably isn’t realistic. Of course, no one is going to get all those guys out all the time anyway…
    As far as Mirabelli is concerned, I’d like someone younger as well, but who are you going to get? In the AL, among actual backups with at least 100 PAs (this weeds out Kurt Suzuki, Joe Mauer, Napoli, as well as guys with ridiculously small samples)), he’s fourth in RC/G behind Kelly Shoppach and Jamie Burke, both of whom have probably unsustainable BABIPs above .350, and Mike Redmond of the Twins, who probably isn’t going anywhere. And the “not going anywhere” certainly applies to Shoppach as well.

    QuoSF September 12, 2007, 4:54 pm
  • I’m much more comfortable with the idea of Joba, Kennedy, and Hughes being in the NY rotation next year than I am for the Boston squad.
    If 60% of a staff are rookies and sophmores, there is a TON of room for problems.
    Neither staff should go this way if it can be avoided because none of these guys are ready for that kind of jump next year.
    If anything I think Lester and Hughes make the full-time jump, but that’s it.

    Brad September 12, 2007, 5:00 pm
  • I can’t see the Sox or Yankees going into the season with 3 rooks/question marks in the rotation, without a serious back-up plan. (Counting DiceK in that camp).
    None of Lester, Buck, Hughes, or Joba will get anywhere close to 280 IP.
    The Sox should use Wake in the swingman role and spend the money on a LAIM (league average innings mucnher, which seems to be going for about $10 million per).
    Not sure what the Yankees should do as they need to spend the dough on Arod/Posada/Mo.
    They’ll have an anchor of Wang/Pettitte/Hughes and hope for 120-150 each innings from 3 of the following: Joba, Kennedy, Igawa, Rasner, Mussina, and Horne.
    They are developing enough middle inning relief depth that they might save the big $$ for the free agent class of 2009. But if one of those big 3 go down it could get ugly.

    Michael T September 12, 2007, 5:15 pm
  • I’m way late to this…but, I can’t see Atlanta not resigning Teixeira. Not after giving up quite a haul to get him in the first place.

    yankeemonkey September 12, 2007, 5:18 pm
  • Very few starters will get anywhere close to 280 IP. Anywhere. Not just young Yankee and Red Sox starters.

    QuoSF September 12, 2007, 5:19 pm
  • Of course, lmeant to say non of… will get close to 180 innings pitched (instead of 280).

    Michael T September 12, 2007, 5:21 pm
  • YM, I can see them not giving him an extension (or reaching an agreement on one), but I doubt they’ll trade him as someone else suggested.
    The Braves, whether true or not, act is if they cannot increase payroll. Salty, etc. were going to the Rangers for a 2-year rental all along. Teixeira is a Boras client as well, so he’d have to have some strong family ties to the Atlana area in order for him to be in their price range. This isn’t the case AFAIK.
    Of course, lmeant to say non of… will get close to 180 innings pitched (instead of 280).
    Ah, then I have to disagree with you Michael. Barring injury or complete ineffectiveness, I’m pretty sure Jon Lester will pitch 180 for the Sox next season. Comparatively, Lester has a great amount of IP and GS vs. the other three (combined as well, probably?), that he’s at least reached that stage where he probably could be expected to have the endurance for a full slate of 30+ starts.

    QuoSF September 12, 2007, 5:25 pm
  • Jon Lester’s career high IP is 148 in 2005. I wouldn’t think they’d want to stretch him more than 10% beyond that.
    And, hey will be lucky to get that (165 IP)out of him next year unless he figures out a way to use under 17 pitches per inning, which i already a big improvement over last year.

    Michael T September 12, 2007, 5:34 pm
  • Including MiL time, he’s at 137 1/3 IP this season. He has three starts left. Even if I get conservative and assume an average of 5 IP over those starts, he’ll be up to 152 1/3, with the possibility of pitching either in relief in the playoffs (probably/possibly unrealistic) or taking Wakefield’s spot if his back still hurts (more realistic). Getting from 155-160 IP to 180 next season isn’t too far of a jump.

    QuoSF September 12, 2007, 5:41 pm
  • Quo-
    180 IP is certainly plausible if he manages nearly 160 this year. But I still think it is aggressive for a 24-year old who missed nearly a year recovering from cancer.
    In 2006, only 36 AL starters logged 170 or more innings. Of those, only 3 were 24 years or younger (Bonderman, Verlander and Ervin Santana).

    Michael T September 12, 2007, 5:49 pm
  • And that’s worked out real well for Bonderman…

    IronHorse (yf) September 12, 2007, 6:15 pm
  • Bonderman is an outlier in this case (pitched 162 his rookie year, and had thrown 180+ TWICE before 2006), though the point about Lester’s youth and recovery from cancer is well-taken.
    I still think if he gets very close to 160 this season, only injury and ineffectiveness would keep him from approaching 180 in 2008. I think the gloves are off as far as going to lengths to limit his innings.

    QuoSF September 12, 2007, 6:22 pm

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