The concept of salary caps is very common in professional sports leagues. But the pay base is very low. In terms of salary, we are talking about the minimum a team should spend in a season. It is in the NHL, but not in the NFL, NBA, MLS or major league baseball.
In the NHL, the salary base for 2021-2022 is $ 60.2 million and the cap is $ 81.5 million. By imposing a very high base, teams are forced to have some well-paid players, which ensures a comparative balance in the league. In MLB this is the complete opposite.
If we return to the salary cap briefly, the MLB pay cap is “soft”. This can be violated, but the overspending team will have to pay a luxury tax, and may even face fines if they exceed the cap. By 2022, three teams (out of 30) are expected to exceed the $ 210 million mark: the Yankees ($ 221 million), the Dodgers ($ 233 million) and the Mets ($ 265 million). All figures in this text are dated December 26, 2021.
Let’s compare that to the three teams that cost the least.
So far in 2022, the Cleveland Guardians will spend $ 29.05 million. After that, Jose Ramirez will earn $ 12 million, earning only 41.31% of the total salary. 15 major league players earn more than Guardians pay.
Baltimore Orioles will spend $ 23.75 million on current players. That means 29 Major League players will earn more than Baltimore’s total pay. The highest paid player on the team is Trey Mancini with eight million dollars and Jordan Liles with six million dollars.
The Pittsburgh Pirates are the lowest-spending team with a salary of $ 21.45 million. 35 players from the Majors will receive higher salaries.
Definitely, non-spending teams find themselves below the classification. In 2021, the Baltimore American finished last with a record of 321. The Pirates finished second to last nationally with a record of 377.
Nine teams will spend more than $ 150 million in 2022, eight $ 100 to $ 150 million, 10 $ 50 to $ 100 million and three less than $ 50 million. By setting the salary base at $ 60 million, the league’s balance will already be a little better. Because, let’s face it, being a supporter of a team that loses all the time is not easy (I vote for pirates, it sucks). The Pirates lost 20 consecutive seasons between 1993 and 2012, having three good seasons before that and then dropping back in the rankings.
Another thing that should help balance: having a real salary limit, it can not be spent. Because if you can pay your players $ 200 million a year, you can buy luxury tax.
Big $ 300 million deals have been awarded recently, but there are still teams that have not been awarded $ 100 million deals, including Pirates.
And some are losing teams, which is okay because no one wants to see them play. But, precisely because of their appearance, no one wanted to see them play. It’s hard to see your team playing knowing they are going to lose (Montreal Canadians can not fill the bell center when they have the right, though they are popular). By imposing a pay base, teams will become more competitive, which will bring in more spectators, which will give teams money and they can spend even more to improve their performance.
The cities that run these clubs deserve to win. In 2018, when the Baltimore Orioles season ended with a bad .290, I went to watch the Baltimore game. The stadium was so beautiful, the atmosphere was. Imagine a season of success. Same thing in Pittsburgh. These cities deserve to support the winning teams.
The MLB and the Players’ Association are in the midst of discussions for a new joint venture, and I believe it is only necessary to discuss it (from the ground up) to increase the popularity of the game of baseball. If not for the rest of the league, there is no point in having some of the most popular teams.
For all team salary figures, See here.