MLB, Where Are The Payroll Dollars Going? Scott Boras Has An Answer


A.J. Burnett gave up nine hits, two bombs, and four runs against the Padres in front of a full house at PNC Park.

Surprise, surprise, Scott Boras has a theory.

We went over to check out some work from Murray Chass.  If you don’t recall the name, don’t worry, we didn’t either.  Chass was a Pittsburgh Pirates fan who graduated from Pitt in 1960 and went on to work his tail off achieving some great things in his life.  In his bio, it states:

"Chass began covering baseball with the Associated Press in Pittsburgh. Games 6 and 7 of the 1960 World Series were the first games he covered, and they marked the end of his status as a Pirates fan. Rooting and writing don’t mix, he decided early on.He had been a huge Pirates fan in his earlier years, spending one teen-age summer watching 50 games from the left field bleachers at Forbes Field for a dollar a game. There has never been a better summer.Chass is also in the Western Pennsylvania Jewish Hall of Fame."

Chass has never been a big Boras fan.  He admits so in his recent article.

It’s an article in which Boras presents an interesting case on team payrolls.  Boras states that:

"….most teams have lower payrolls five weeks before spring training than their highest opening-day payrolls since the 2000 season."

So where is the cash going you might ask?  Boras has an answer…

"“They’re paying off the debt they acquired to buy the team. The fans need to be aware of it.”"

It’s nearly impossible to prove what Boras claims, but as far as conspiracy theories go,  it’s a damn interesting read.    We looked around and dug up some payroll numbers on our hometown Bucs, but as we thought, they are all over the board.

The Pirates opening day payroll in 2001 was $52, 698 million according to AP.  And the Pirates opening day payroll in 2012 was $54, 372 million according to USA Today.  But we wanted to check one other more commonly used location for such things, Cots Contracts–now located on Baseball Prospectus.

According to Cots, the Pirates opening day payroll in 2001 was $57,760 million.  And the Pirates opening day payroll in 2012 was $51,932 million.

Courtesy of

With MLB revenues climbing over eight billion dollars and revenue sharing also in place these days, baseball is booming.  We know where the allegiance for Boras lies, it’s a great allegiance if your a client.

But maybe, just maybe fans are getting cheated around Major League Baseball.  Maybe Boras isn’t as crazy as everyone thinks.

No wait.  How much did Kevin Correia just get?  Sean Burnett?  And Rafael Soriano just got what?  Wait.  Hold on.

Here is the link to the entire article.