Opening day is upon us again, which means it is time for the annual beginning-of-season snapshot look at the Dodgers’ payroll. The Dodgers will open 2017 with a payroll of nearly $228 million, a slight decrease from 2016, still tops in MLB.
This is based on my own tracking of the Dodgers’ payroll, which counts only money paid out during that year. It might be a little different that numbers tracked by Associated Press or USA Today, for instance, but I have been tracking this since 2009 so we have a consistent methodology to look at.
And thanks to USA Today for filling in some of the smaller details.
For instance, Kenley Jansen makes $10 million in salary in 2017, but also got paid his $4 million signing bonus. Some might spread that signing bonus over the life of the contract. For our purposes, however, Jansen earns $14 million this season. His competitive balance tax number is $16 million, the average of his $80 million contract over the five years.
Similarly, Scott Kazmir has a $16 million salary this year, though slightly reduced because half is deferred to 2020. For our purposes, Kazmir earns $8 million this year, rather than the present-value-discounted $15 million or so used for luxury tax purposes.
Another difference might be Kenta Maeda, who has a $3 million base salary in 2017 but the Dodgers will also finish out their payments to the Hiroshima Carp, totaling $6.6 million this year. Since that is a cost to the Dodgers (though it doesn’t count against the luxury tax), I count Maeda as $9.6 million in 2017.
The 25 players active on opening day total $161.17 million in 2017, up about 7.1% from last year.
Keep in mind that with various roster moves throughout the season, the payroll will change. We will keep track all season long.
But for now, here is the 2017 opening day payroll for the Dodgers.
2017 Dodgers opening day payroll
|1B/OF||Scott Van Slyke||$1,325,000|
|Total active roster||$161,170,000||(2016 was $150.5m; up 7.1%)|
|Total disabled list||$27,687,500||(2016 was $66.14m; down 58.1%)|
|Total active roster & DL||$188,857,500||(2016 was $216.64m; down 12.8%)|
|Carl Crawford||$21,000,000||released in 2016|
|Alex Guerrero||$5,000,000||released in 2016|
|Matt Kemp||$3,500,000||traded in Dec. 2014|
|RHP||Josh Fields||$1,050,000||in minors for now|
|IF||Charlie Culberson||$550,000||in minors for now|
|IF||Erisbel Arreubarrena||$4,000,000||not on 40-man|
|RHP||Yaisel Sierra||$2,500,000||not on 40-man|
|OF||Dian Toscano||$1,300,000||not on 40-man|
|Total dead money & other||$38,900,000||(2016 was $19.3m; up 101.3%)|
|Total 2017 Dodgers payroll||$227,757,500||(2016 was $235.97m; down 3.5%)|