Earlier today 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 2010.
  • The Rays now have 40 players on the 40-man roster after the recent additions of Desmond Jennings, Jeremy Hellickson and Alex Torres. However, Elliot Johnson and Mitch Talbot are candidates to be traded or designated for assignment as they are out of minor league options and not likely to be on the big league roster unless somebody is injured. Gabe Gross and Dioner Navarro are both candidates to be non-tendered to traded.
  • The Rays have 10 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?
  • The opening day payroll projects to be $63.0 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. We are including the $700K used to buy out team options. While not officially part of the payroll, it is certainly a cost that must be factored.
(1) Based only on players currently within the organization and will be updated when trades are consumated and free agents are signed.
(2) Once a player is added to the 40-man roster, the team can ‘option’ the player to the minors 3 times. A team cannot be charged with using more than one option in a given season even if a player is demoted to the minors several times that year. An option is not used if a player is added to the 40-man roster midseason unless he is sent back to the minors at some point. An option is only used if a player spends more than 20 days in the minors while on the 40-man roster. A player with more than 5 years experience can refuse a minor league assignment, so we list those players as having no options.
(3) Years remaining under control of franchise before free agency eligibility. A player can become a free agent after 6 years of Major League service time.
(4) First, second and third year players will have their salaries determined by the team, but will fall close to the major league minimum which is $400K in ’10. Minor leaguers on the 40-man for the first time make $33,750 and second-year players (or players with at least 1 day of major league experience) make twice that amount. We are not including signing bonuses or incentives.
* Players with at least 3 years since their big league debut. These players must clear optional waivers in order to be demoted to the minors even if they have options remaining.


  1. Charles says:

    Man, Pena is looking more and more like a trade-deadline trade candidate to me. I’d hate to see him go, but he could actually fetch something in return and Wily Aybar could play at first at 10% of the salary.

    • Don says:

      Aybar is a BETTER everday hitter (avg)…lose a little in home runs but Willie could hit 25-30, lose a little in field… but would be a good move if Rays could get a big time catcher, reliever or everyday RF…They should for AL home run leader…..

      • steve-o1285 says:

        What is your infatuation with batting average?

        • Don says:

          Something I learned in Little League…the more hits you get(avg)…the more runs you score….made sense to me….how about you? or do you think hitting a home run every four games more important?

          • steve-o1285 says:

            Well yes, a home run every four games would be pretty important. Who doesn’t want a 40-HR season?

            Apparently your little league coach didn’t teach you that there are other ways to get on base. Pena walks a lot, which is why he has a higher OBP than Aybar…higher SLG, OPS, ISO and wOBA as well. But yeah, I guess he’s a crappy hitter because of batting average.

            By your logic, Alberto Callaspo was a better hitter than Alex Rodriguez last season.

    • I’m surprised we don’t hear more speculation about Pena being traded now. I’d rather keep Crawford and move Pena if money needs to be saved.

    • Beth says:

      You are right! There are two really big salaries (well, three, if you count Burrell), and Crawford’s is just one. I love Carlos but sometimes wonder if the 30-40 homers, strong D and great smile is worth the 3,000 strike-outs (at least it often feels like 3,000 a season).

      But Pena, due to his age and inconsistency as a hitter, wouldn’t get the same value as Crawford. So I would agree that Pena is more expendable than Crawford, but trading him may not yield much, unless you had a contending team needing to fill that specific spot in July.

      But let’s not fool ourselves into thinking that Aybar can take Pena’s place without a dropoff on both power and defense. Pena would seem like a better trade option if there were a strong first baseman at a high level of the farm system.

  2. Andrew says:

    I’d be very surprised if Bartlett earns only $3.5MM in arbitration; my guess is that somewhere north of $5MM is more likely, given a) that he was voted team MVP for *not* hitting in 2008, b) he hit the ever-lovin’ snot out of the ball in 2009, and c) the market price for a premium all-glove, no-bat shortstop is $5MM (see Jack Wilson). This is also Bartlett’s second year of arbitration eligibility, I believe, which typically drives the price up as well.

  3. Don says:

    Stevie-boy…let me ask you a question….see how smart you are…
    Lets go to extremes….
    Would you want a team with 9/40hr players and they SO 200 times or
    A team (Bartlett types) that hit .340 with 10 hrs
    Which team would win more games?

    • steve-o1285 says:

      That may be the dumbest question I’ve ever seen.

      I’m not doing this anymore. Trying to turn retards into respectable fans is such a fruitless effort.

      • Don says:

        TOUCHDOWN…I knew you you couldn’t answer a queston like that…
        Thanks for proving your a moron…….
        Anyone else on this site want to answer my question…..how about you Professor…home run man ….!!

  4. ben says:

    Aybar can hit with the best of the them, but watching him field is like watching teeball, its down right hard to watch with his fielding blunders, you can get any high school baseball player in the hillsborough pinellas county are that fields better than Aybar. And also what is up with everyone saying lets dump salary, if the Rays want to contend every year they need to grow a pair and extend guys the likes of CC and Pena, its gonna cost some money, but you will make some in the end with people paying to come see them play. Put Aybar at first bass full time and the Rays fall back to the 2002-2005 or 6 rays before Pena came along. The rays have the money to sign CC and Pena to extensions but they arent man enough to do it. Sign them then if they don’t live up to the contract you can trade them, the fact of what they can do will get you alot for them. I love the Rays but watching them play well and get in the playoff hunt and then trade the best thing going for them to save money is down right depressing, they traded Kas when they were 3 games out of the wild card in the beginning of september they basically told the red sox and rangers have at it we quit and they played like it the rest of the way out.

    • Charles says:

      Listen, I hate the idea of a salary dump as much as the next guy, but the reality is that they went to the World Series and people still didn’t show up at the Trop, and they have to operate based on what actually happens and not what we all think or hope will happen. The problem with signing them and then trading them if they don’t live up to the contract is that no one will want them at that price – the Rays will have to eat money or accept nothing in return. Trading higher fits in better with the long term operating strategy of the team – get young affordable talent you can control for many years.

      As for Kaz, the guy really needed a change of scenery. He was pretty much the #4 starter, stats-wise. The Rays sold high-ish on him to a team in a pennant race and got what we think is quality in return, with the bonus that Wade Davis performed just as well as Kaz would have for us down the stretch.

  5. Gus says:

    Late to the party, but I’d be curious if there was any reaction to Scott Boras’ assertion on ESPN radio the other day with the idiotic Mikes that the revenue sharing teams are clearing close to $80M from central MLB funds; that puts team revenue by my calculation way north of $100M and makes this $65M payroll limit look crazy low. Is Stu pulling a Glazer on this fan base?

    • Beth says:

      Gus, I don’t know the answer to your question, but I sure wouldn’t trust Scott Boras as my source. He has an quite an incentive to create the impression that teams are swimming in money.

      But I’d like to see MLB make the revenue sharing distributions very transparent. As long as baseball clubs are asking for public support for their stadiums (and they all do!) then there needs to be public accountability about their revenues. Any team willing to fund the construction and operation of its facilities with no public aid is welcome to keep its finances private.

    • I believe the last time MLB released revenue sharing figures was 2005 and the Rays had the most at about ~$35M. I doubt the number has jumped all the way to $100M+ in 4 years. Of course, who knows how accurate the $35M figure was. My guess is that the biggest haul in revenue sharing is somewhere in the middle and that wouldn’t be the Rays. There are teams with lower payrolls and worse attendance.

      • Gus says:

        I appreciate the feedback. But I’m thinking a jump from $35M in 2005 to $70M or so in 2010 is within the realm of possibility. While Boras is a sleaze, he is a sleaze with good access to information. Again, if the Rays are saying they want public dollars for a new stadium, then it is fair to ask what are they doing in terms of profitability. John Henry had quotes earlier this week saying that the 4 most cash flow positive teams (i.e. most profitable in the short run) were all revenue-sharing teams, and I believe the Rays to be on that list. He is proposing a “floor” for MLB payrolls if you take revenue sharing $ which is the right idea generally, although you need some teeth in it to really make it work (see the NFL and the Buccanneers).

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