The Pittsburgh Pirates have a lot of players heading into arbitration this offseason. Here are the projections for what they will earn.
The Pittsburgh Pirates have one of the youngest team’s in baseball. They have a lot of young talent that is still developing and likely will only continue to get younger. It is a transitional time in the Pittsburgh Pirates organization, new manager and coaches, a roster shake up likely with veterans likely being moved, and a number of young players turning into the team’s core.
With having so many young players on the current roster, the team will also have a lot of arbitration cases ahead of them. The Pittsburgh Pirates have 10 total players due for pay raises this year, some of them more significant than others.
The Pittsburgh Pirates most notable arbitration eligible players are Josh Bell, Keone Kela, Trevor Williams, and Joe Musgrove. Other players that are up for arbitration include Adam Frazier, Erik Gonzalez, Jameson Taillon, Chad Kuhl, Elias Diaz, and Michael Feliz. The reason Frazier is in the secondary list is because he very well may not be the team’s starting second baseman last year with the emergence of Kevin Newman and Cole Tucker showing his abilities at shortstop.
Still, this is a lot of players compared to years past for the Pittsburgh Pirates to have to work out deals with or go to arbitration. This will change their payroll no doubt, although it could be balanced out by roster moves. So what are the players going through arbitration projected to get? Every year MLB Trade Rumors puts out their projections for the player’s salaries, and they have always been within a small margin of error of the players actual salaries. They recently released their projections for this offseason. Here are the projections for the Pittsburgh Pirates:
"Keone Kela – $3.4MMMichael Feliz – $1.2MMJameson Taillon – $2.3MMElias Diaz – $1.4MMChad Kuhl – $1.4MMAdam Frazier – $3.2MMJoe Musgrove – $3.4MMJosh Bell – $5.9MMTrevor Williams – $3.0MMErik Gonzalez – $800K"
In total, it looks like the Bucs will be paying out around $26 million to arbitration eligible players. These same players earned about $8.1 million last year, an increase of $18 million without considering who will be off the books. Still, knowing the Pittsburgh Pirates, they will cut in other areas (potentially a Starling Marte trade or some other player movement).
Furthermore, this makes up 40 percent of their 25 man roster and the current payroll for 2020 is projected to be around $65-70 million. These arbitration costs should not be an excuse for the team not to spend this upcoming offseason.