Recalculated Mets 2019 Payroll

There are some who want to push the narrative the Mets spend. After all, they gave Jacob deGrom a contract extension. They took on the bulk of Robinson Cano‘s contract.

When you break it all down, it appears the Mets had a high payroll. In fact, Spotrac had the Mets with a $146.3 million payroll which was the 12th highest in the sport.

About that.

For starters, David Wright‘s $15 million salary was included. As reported by Ken Davidoff of the New York Post, that was renegotiated down to $9 million with deferred money. That drops the payroll down to $140.3 million.

That alone drops the Mets from 12th to 14th in payroll. If you back out Wright’s entire $15 million, the active payroll would be down to $131.3 million, which would rank 16th.

Like with Wright, Yoenis Cespedes was injured and could not play. With him injuring himself on his farm leading the Mets to challenge and renegotiate Cespedes’ contract. All said and done, his $29 million salary in 2019 was reduced to $14.8 million.

Taking that money away from the payroll, which includes Wright’s renegotiated deal, the Mets payroll drops from the original $146.3 million to $126.1 million. That’s a figure moving the Mets to just the 18th best payroll.

Looking at the Spotrac calculations, it actually includes the deferred monies owed to Bobby Bonilla and Bret Saberhagen. When you remove those amounts, the payroll is reduced by $1.4 million. That $124.7 million payroll would drop them down to 19th.

That’s right. In terms of expenditures to players actually with the organization in some capacity, the Mets had the 19th highest payroll. That kept them JUST outside the bottom third.

Of course, if you back out the whole of Wright and Cespedes, who were insured and did not play, the ensuing $102.3 million payroll would rank 25th.

Depending on how you choose to analyze it, the Wilpons pocketed at least $20 million between Wright and Cespedes, perhaps more.

Fact is, the Mets actually spent money in line with the bottom third in the league despite mortgaging the future to try to win in 2019, telling the fans they were all-in, and boasting “Come get us!” to all of baseball.

6 Replies to “Recalculated Mets 2019 Payroll”

  1. Blair M. Schirmer says:

    Solid writeup. The clowns who claim the Mets spend always sound like front office interns ordered while on their coffee breaks to try (vainly, always vainly) to pump up ownership, and they always manage to avoid acknowledging *the NY Mets are in the largest and richest market in NA sports.*

    Anything outside a top 3 payroll, top 5 at most in a typical year is cheap and foolish. If you’re rebuilding, if it’s a case where you realize that in a given year the money is better spent on the farm, on overslot picks, on beefing up the system through various deals, or if money not spent in year one is getting spent in year two then, sure, you might drop payroll a little–but you’d drop it to around where the Mets *peaked* last year and this.

    Keep in mind, too, that the Mets FO surely knew at least in the last few weeks if not months they were getting a huge break on Cespedes’ 2019 and 2020 salaries. His cut in salary was the result of a negotiation between his and the Mets’ lawyers. He was doing something forbidden by contract, and this is the settlement. So they knew they well in advance they had Wheeler money, actually good pitcher money–particularly if they had moved before the market blew up with Strasburg then Cole–they chose to fritter away on bits and pieces. Typical.

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