Author Topic: Payroll Flexibility.....  (Read 4455 times)

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Offline 24 Nats

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Payroll Flexibility.....
« Topic Start: December 20, 2010, 04:23:21 PM »
http://voices.washingtonpost.com/nationalsjournal/2010/12/payroll_flexibility_a_critical.html


Payroll flexibility a critical issue for Nats' future

By Dave Sheinin

The Philadelphia Phillies will have a payroll north of $160 million in 2011. They also have $106.95 million committed to only nine players in 2012 (and that's assuming they decline expensive options on Brad Lidge and Roy Oswalt), and $80 million to just four players in 2013. For the Nationals and their NL East brethren, the best hope for competing with the Phillies down the road may be that the Phillies' roster grows old and bloated, with no escape from these massive contracts and little financial flexibility to work around them.

The one thing the Nationals don't need to do is bog themselves down in future salary commitments in a similar manner. Although we all understand why the Nationals went as high and as long, in terms of dollars and years, as they did with Jayson Werth, the scariest part of that signing is the fact Werth will be pulling in $21 million each in 2015, 2016 and 2017 when he is 36, 37 and 38 years old. One of those deals is manageable; several of them could be untenable.

Still, looking ahead to the near future, the Nationals have only $28 million in payroll commitments for 2012 ($13 million for Werth, $12 million for Ryan Zimmerman and $3 million for Stephen Strasburg) and $30 million in 2013 ($16 million for Werth, $14 million for Zimmerman). (Of course, as with the Phillies' commitments, those figures don't take account the raises for arbitration-eligible players, which could boost the totals significantly.)

That's not to say Nationals fans wouldn't trade places with their Phillies counterparts in a heartbeat. But Washington's payroll flexibility -- assuming they don't squander it away by making more over-market signings this winter -- could be a major asset in future seasons, when they are closer to contending, and one or two big acquisitions could put them over the top.

This is one reason Nationals fans should be breathing a sigh of relief the team didn't trade for former Kansas City Royals ace Zack Greinke. Beyond the fact that the cost for such a trade was high, in terms of young talent, the Nationals would have been tempted to push for a long-term contract extension with Greinke, who is signed only through 2012, in order to justify that cost. (It wouldn't have made any sense for the Nationals to trade five more years of Jordan Zimmermann, plus other pieces, for two years of Greinke.) And such a contract, at least at today's market prices for a No. 1 starter ($20 million-$23 million per season), would have presented all sorts of problems, not the least of which is Greinke's history of emotional issues.





click link for rest of story
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Take that Philly.

Offline NatsDad14

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #1: December 20, 2010, 04:27:31 PM »
At least we can hang our payroll flexibility banners alongside the Redskins Offseason championship banners. Hooray DC!

Offline blue911

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #2: December 20, 2010, 04:33:15 PM »
I can't see how signing Adam Dunn would have changed their flexibility. It fact it seems like they are backing themselves into a corner of overpaying for lesser talent.

Offline Tyler Durden

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #3: December 20, 2010, 04:48:50 PM »
Payroll Flexibility is awesome.

 :az:

Offline NeedaNewNick

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #4: December 20, 2010, 05:07:04 PM »
"Payroll Flexibility" is a euphemism for Dumpster Diving.

Dibble was right about how dumb the FO and ownership think we are.

Offline hammondsnats

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #5: December 20, 2010, 05:08:33 PM »
i won't even touch this thread outside of this post.  :couch:

i'll let you all have fun with this 8)

Offline PC

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #6: December 20, 2010, 05:12:36 PM »
God, this is the rally cry of the LOSER! I can't believe people are trying to peddle this bullcrap!!!

They can have infinite payroll flexibility if they never sign the best players...and they'll likely finish last in the NL East every year.  

Payroll flexibility and last place!  :thumbs:

Offline Vega

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #7: December 20, 2010, 05:12:54 PM »
There is a difference between spending lots of money foolishly and spending lots of money wisely.

Offline Tyler Durden

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #8: December 20, 2010, 05:16:34 PM »
I'm glad they don't have lots of money tied up in crap contracts like the Cubs.

Still, this is not something you trumpet.  If Sheinin thought he was doing the Nats a favor, he's wrong.  If the Nats thought they would benefit from getting Sheinin to write this, they're wrong.

For a team that has a reputation, rightly or wrongly, of being 'cheap,' this article is pretty damaging to perceptions.

If, at the end of the 2011 season, they are successful due to payroll flexibility allowing them to acquire a couple of overpaid guys, then they can crow about it.  Crowing about having low payrolls after 300 losses in 3 years is pretty poor taste.

Offline Baseball is Life

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #9: December 20, 2010, 06:19:01 PM »
This message directly from the Nats FO to the fan base is OK in the short term. In other words, they are saying to hold on, we have some bullets in the chamber. Please bear with us. But if they don't fire those bullets, they will look cheeeeeeeeppppp.

Offline HalfSmokes

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #10: December 20, 2010, 06:36:24 PM »
Other teams with payroll flexibility include: Pirates, Royals, Padres, Marlins. The common denominator seems to be payroll flexibility = no playoffs

Offline UMDNats

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #11: December 20, 2010, 06:44:50 PM »
Man I'm so glad we didn't give Dunn that contract so we have the flexibility to sign no one in 2014.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #12: December 20, 2010, 07:32:17 PM »
Other teams with payroll flexibility include: Pirates, Royals, Padres, Marlins. The common denominator seems to be payroll flexibility = no playoffs
Not quite true.  Payroll flexibility can be generated by having high dollar contracts of short duration.

Compare the Red Sox to the Phillies. They both have comparable payroll this year.  That said, the Red Sox had terrific payroll flexibility this year and have it next year due to expiring contracts.  They view their max payroll at right about the luxury tax threshold, and have only had to pay $13MM in luxury tax this decade (in comparision, the NYY have paid $171 MM, the Tigers $6MM, and the Angels <$1MM).  They have $54 MM coming off the books next year, and still project to be below the tax threshold this year even after adding Jenks and Wheeler this week.  The Phillies, as Sheinin points out, have bound themselves to a lot of long term full value contracts and will have less room to add contracts next year.

It's a different neighborhood than the Nats, but for those of you who want the Nats to be more active in the FA market to boost the team's short term performance, you would want shorter, higher AAV contracts to round out the team before the system products like Harper and Norris come up.  That would be something like Pena money for Lee for a year rather than 3 years, $21MM for LaRoche, or 2 years, $26 MM for Pavano rather than 3/$33 MM.

Offline spidernat

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #13: December 20, 2010, 07:44:15 PM »

Offline Evolution33

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #14: December 20, 2010, 08:08:05 PM »
This message directly from the Nats FO to the fan base is OK in the short term. In other words, they are saying to hold on, we have some bullets in the chamber. Please bear with us. But if they don't fire those bullets, they will look cheeeeeeeeppppp.

Sheinin doesn't strike me as a puppet.

Offline PANatsFan

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #15: December 20, 2010, 08:09:09 PM »
Sheinin doesn't strike me as a puppet.

He PWNED the Skins last year.

Offline Tyler Durden

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #16: December 20, 2010, 08:15:02 PM »
Sheinin doesn't strike me as a puppet.

That article could have been written by the Marlins ownership. 

The timing of it was terrible.  They need to send stuff like that out after a successful season.  Not after another 90+ loss season.  And not after so many years of having been perceived as cheap. 

Offline xposbrad

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #17: December 20, 2010, 08:24:45 PM »
We only have payroll flexibility if it means we are increasing payroll to compete with the Mets/Phillies in our division. Otherwise, how is it flexible if we're at the max of our budget? So let's hope our payroll is on par with the Phils in a couple of years..

Offline Evolution33

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #18: December 20, 2010, 08:25:39 PM »
That article could have been written by the Marlins ownership. 

The timing of it was terrible.  They need to send stuff like that out after a successful season.  Not after another 90+ loss season.  And not after so many years of having been perceived as cheap. 

WaPo is having some tough times but they didn't have a 90 loss season.

Offline HalfSmokes

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #19: December 20, 2010, 08:30:27 PM »
Not quite true.  Payroll flexibility can be generated by having high dollar contracts of short duration.

Compare the Red Sox to the Phillies. They both have comparable payroll this year.  That said, the Red Sox had terrific payroll flexibility this year and have it next year due to expiring contracts.  They view their max payroll at right about the luxury tax threshold, and have only had to pay $13MM in luxury tax this decade (in comparision, the NYY have paid $171 MM, the Tigers $6MM, and the Angels <$1MM).  They have $54 MM coming off the books next year, and still project to be below the tax threshold this year even after adding Jenks and Wheeler this week.  The Phillies, as Sheinin points out, have bound themselves to a lot of long term full value contracts and will have less room to add contracts next year.

It's a different neighborhood than the Nats, but for those of you who want the Nats to be more active in the FA market to boost the team's short term performance, you would want shorter, higher AAV contracts to round out the team before the system products like Harper and Norris come up.  That would be something like Pena money for Lee for a year rather than 3 years, $21MM for LaRoche, or 2 years, $26 MM for Pavano rather than 3/$33 MM.

The Red Sox have $30+ million plus tied up in Lackey and Beckett alone. Throw in Crawford and Youk and you get another ~$30 million. That's four players who account for more than the Nationals opening day payroll last year, just looking quickly at Cotts, it appears the Sox have about as much committed (excluding options) for 2014 as the Nats 2010 opening day payroll, and that's before Gonzalez gets extended. It's easier to be flexible with a real budget.

Offline PC

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #20: December 20, 2010, 08:30:31 PM »
WaPo is having some tough times but they didn't have a 90 loss season.

So you're saying the Nationals FO disagrees with this position, despite various members of the Nats-covering press trying to sell it?  Are these reporters getting nothing from the front office that sounds like this and they're making it up out of whole cloth?

Offline Tyler Durden

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #21: December 20, 2010, 08:30:39 PM »
Dave Sheinin is smart about baseball.  I don't for a second believe he would say that the Marlins are in a great position because they have payroll flexibility in the future.  

I don't want to start throwing out wild accusations, but I do believe that Sheinin was asked by someone in the Nats employ to write that article.

Offline Evolution33

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #22: December 20, 2010, 08:37:20 PM »
So you're saying the Nationals FO disagrees with this position, despite various members of the Nats-covering press trying to sell it?  Are these reporters getting nothing from the front office that sounds like this or are they making it up out of whole cloth?

A lot of smart baseball people think that having money to spend and spending it wisely is a good thing.

Offline PANatsFan

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #23: December 20, 2010, 08:38:04 PM »
A lot of smart baseball people think that having money to spend and spending it wisely is a good thing.

If they do what they say they are going to, the Nats are going to be fearsome. Go ahead and put that in your sigs, LAC, watch it come true.

Offline HalfSmokes

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Re: Payroll Flexibility.....
« Reply #24: December 20, 2010, 08:39:28 PM »
If they do what they say they are going to, the Nats are going to be fearsome. Go ahead and put that in your sigs, LAC, watch it come true.

can we get an eta on that?