[Update] We have now updated this projection with the recent additions of Jesse Chavez and Ramon Ramirez to the 40-man roster. Both pitchers still have minor league options so at this time we are projecting that they will start the year in Durham. However, both pitchers will compete for roster spots in the Spring. Also, the Rays recently bought out two options at a total of $700K. While not officially part of the 2010 payroll, the Rays operate within a budget and it is a cost that cannot be ignored. Therefore, we choose to include the options as part of the 2010 payroll projection.
[Update] This projection has been updated to reflect the re-signing of Gabe Kapler. This move likely bumps Fernando Perez back to the minors and reduces the number of projected openings on the 40-man roster to five.
Yesterday we projected the 2010 25-man roster. Now let’s look at what that means for the 40-man roster and the opening day payroll.
40-Man Roster Projection (notes and explanations on the projection can be found following the roster)…
Notes on the 40-man roster projection
- Ages are as of today. Shaded players are projected to be on the 40-man roster, but not on the 25-man roster. Italicized players are currently on the 40-man roster but are not projected to be on the roster in ’09 (actually, Dillon, Hernandez and Nelson have already been declared free agents).
- Several players in the minors will be eligible for the Rule 5 draft for the first time this winter and either need to be added to the 40-man roster or risk being selected by another organization. This list includes Desmond Jennings, Jeremy Hellickson, Aneury Rodriguez, Ryan Royster, Chris Nowak, Eduardo Morlan, Nevin Ashley and Ryan Reid. Jennings and Hellboy are locks. We have Rodriguez also being added. You could make a case for Morlan and Reid. If only three are added to the roster, that leaves 6 open slots, which would provide the Rays with a ton of roster flexibility when it comes to signing free agents or making trades.
- The Rays have 9 players that will be arbitration-eligible following this season. Salaries for 8 of those players are guestimations at this point based on other arbitration-eligible players in recent years that play the same position, have similar service times and comparable stats. Last year, we missed the five arbitration cases by a total of $300K and nailed 2 right on the head. Anybody you think we are way off on? We are projecting that the other arbitration-eligible player, Gabe Gross, will not be offered arbitration by the Rays.
- The opening day payroll projects to be $62.0 million, but will certainly go up with free agent signings (bullpen) and any additional long-term contracts given to young players (Upton, Garza, Bartlett). Of course, there are places where the Rays can save money, if they choose to trade a player like Carl Crawford or Carlos Pena, both of whom are entering the final years of their current deals. Combined, those two players will account for about one-third of the 2010 payroll.
- Elliot Johnson and Mitch Talbot are out of minor league options and we do not see a spot for them on the 25-man roster, so they will have to be Designated For Assignment and placed on waivers before they can be demoted to the minors.