The 2014 MLB season is just a couple months away and this offseason teams have been working with the knowledge that every team is set to receive $25 million from Major League Baseball due to MLB's new television deal. Despite that, the Baltimore Orioles will have a lower payroll in 2014 than they did in 2013.
Currently, Baseball Reference estimates that the Orioles payroll in 2014 will be just under $83 million, which includes all arbitration raises and the estimate for Matt Wieters, who has yet to come to terms with Baltimore. That figure projects to put the Orioles 19th in the league in regards to total payroll, and again these are the estimated payrolls from Baseball Reference and at best you are looking at Baltimore being in the middle or just below the middle.
So for you math people out there, you will notice that at best, the Orioles will have a payroll $9 million less in 2014 than they did in 2013.
What's the big deal?
Well for the Orioles fans that have been waiting for Baltimore to do something of any real note in free agency, you were already upset with how this offseason has gone, but prepare yourself as you may get infuriated now.
Baltimore, as the team stands now, is set to spend $9 million less this season despite trading away Jim Johnson, who was projected to earn $10 million this season (Johnson did agree to $10 million with Oakland), the departure of Brian Roberts, who made $10 million last season, and as we mentioned before, getting an additional $25 million from MLB for their new national television deal.
That's a lot of cash that has seemingly gone unused.
Do not get us wrong, we understand that owning a team is still a business venture and that the ultimate goal is to make money, but it is a little ridiculous to pocket that much all at once.
The fan base came back towards the end of 2012 as the Orioles finally broke a 14 year streak of losing baseball and made it back to the playoffs for the first time since 1997. Remember how loud Camden Yards was in the 2012 postseason? We can't imagine the team didn't make some money off of making the playoffs. In 2013, attendance went up again as the fan base was reinvigorated with Orioles baseball and the fact that the team had winning expectations, despite nothing really happening in regards to free agency or trade last offseason either.
They say life isn't fair, and there is no argument, but at this point, the life of an Orioles fan really is not fair when you think about how much money the team had to spend on players this offseason, but did nothing with it.
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