With all seven arbitration-eligible players agreeing to one-year contracts, we now have a very good idea of what the 2014 payroll will look like. Assuming no further changes are made to the roster, the payroll will be approximately $77.0 million, the highest in franchise history, topping the $72.8 million payroll in 2010.

Of course, this can still change if David Price is traded or the Rays sign somebody to be a designated hitter. We also don’t know the exact salaries for players in their first three seasons. These players will make close to the league-minimum of $500,000, but the exact amount often varies a few thousand dollars.


Some notes on the projection…

  • Players in grey are players on the 40-man roster that are not projected to be on the opening day roster. We know the salaries that are in bold. The salaries not in bold are estimates but should at least be in the ballpark.
  • There are currently no open spots on the 40-man roster. If the Rays want to sign or trade for any players with major league contracts, they will have to open spots on the 40-man roster by either trading away players or exposing them to waivers.
  • Players with a “0″ under options cannot be sent to the minors without clearing waivers. By my count, Brandon Guyer and Josh Lueke are out of minor league options. So they will have to be removed from the 40-man roster if they fail to make the opening day roster.

(1) 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.
(2) 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.
(3) 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 $500K in ’14. Minor leaguers on the 40-man for the first time make $81,500. We are not including signing bonuses or incentives.



  1. Dave L says:

    Still thats only $13M+ more than the Rays paid out in 2013 as you note.

    Even assuming all things being equal and adding the extra $23M the Rays get from the MLB National TV deal increase, the Rays should theoretically have plenty of money left to spend. $9M more by my crude calculation. Most owners will pound it back into salaries.

    Their revenues are also projected to be the highest in team history correct?

  2. Dave L says:

    I'm dreaming there is a 2 years deal we can reach with Balfour if we plan to keep Price and go for it in 2014.

    Sh*t I just woke up. Sorry.....

  3. Geoff Peterson says:

    3 lefties in the pen and 2 lefties in the rotation. More than most teams for sure.

  4. mep645 says:

    2104 looks sooooo promising! Many of our favoirte Rays are back. With a fine tuned infield and stellar pitching. The question marks are relief closing, DH and catching. Glad that Matt Joyce is still in the roster and not traded. He is steady in fielding with very few errors but had batting slumps last season. Matt didin't have any "I got it" flubs. Can't play Wil everday as he is still in the learning curve..

    With the players listed in the 40 man (AAA) level, the Durham Bulls will have lots of ready players for the Rays in case of injuries. Barring horrible inuries, they Rays should be in the post season 2014.

    • Political_Man says:

      Myers should play as close to everyday as Tampa Bay Ray ever plays. Rays will have to stick him at DH (unlikely) or live with his fielding. My guess is that it will be a mix of the two and that he'll be lifted for a late inning defensive replacement if need be.

      Myers is a critical piece long term IMHO because it gives you some semblance of an offense when Longoria is hurt or slumping. Other players around him are going to see pitches as well because of his presence . Having Longoria and Myers with a professional hitter like Loney sandwiched in between is huge to the everyday lineup. It's the difference between a a below average offense to an average or above average offense.

      Besides, while he did have a bone head play in game one against Boston, he's not THAT bad.

  5. OriginalTom says:

    I think you have to play Myers everday. He is one of the top 3 hitters on the team.

  6. John J. says:

    Let's hope they spend the last $9M from the TV deal on the field.

    • ken says:

      There is an article in the Sunday Times that states MLB may hold back $10M of this years additional revenue due each team. If that is the case, there will not be any additional money to sign Balfour or Rodney as our closer.

  7. Dave L says:

    So we signed 3 catchers with no options obviously.

    None are offensive catchers although the mere presence or sight of Molina offends many Rays fans.

    We cant carry 3 on opening day. So Lobaton has significant trade value?

    Can someone clarify this? This isn't the NFL, if you sign a guy you have to pay him.

    • ken says:

      The Rays are banking on the fact that other teams will need at least a backup catcher before the start of the season. Let's hope another team has a catcher get hurt in ST. There is also the possibility if Price gets traded, that Lobo will be included in that trade.

      What we do know is that since Molina was signed as a free agent, he can't be traded until part way into the 2014 season (maybe June 1?). Hanigan is a lock to be our starter unless he gets hurt in ST.


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