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2009 Payroll Projections


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A lot of you are posting scenarios for next year and beyond. Some of them are outrageously wild, and I think a payroll post is in order to show some of you just how much these guys are going to cost and how it's unrealistic to think we can retain most of this team while adding through free agency. This topic seems to be coming up a bit more as we barrel towards the end of the year and what the hell to do with all of these guys. It is driving me nuts with inaccurate figures, so here you go.


Marlins payroll the last three seasons have been $15 mil, $30 mil, $24 mil. It's your guess for next year.



Hanley Ramirez - $5.5 million

Andrew Miller - $1.3 million


3rd year players, will get a little bump over tender. Probably $415-425k each

Anibal Sanchez

Matt Lindstrom

Reynel Pinto

Taylor Tankeresly

Henry Owens

Lee Gardner

Mike Rabelo


2009 Firstish and Second year, will probably tendered just above the minimum $405-410k

Chris Volstad

John Baker

Robert Andino

Ryan Tucker

Rick Vanden Hurk

Burke Badenhop

Mike Rabelo

Alejandro De Aza

Brett Carroll


Rookies - $400k

Cameron Maybin

Gaby Sanchez

Chris Coghlan

John Raynor

Eulogio De La Cruz

any other rookies


Arbitration Comps. Work shown below on these players.


Kevin Gregg - $5 million

Jorge Cantu - $4.5 million

Dan Uggla - $4.4 million

Mike Jacobs - $3.5 million

Cody Ross - $3 million

Ricky Nolasco - $2.75 million

Jeremy Hermida - $2.5 million

Scott Olsen - $2.25 million

Josh Willingham - $2 million

Josh Johnson - $1.75 million

Alfredo Amezaga - $1.75 million

Sergio Mitre - $1 million

Joe Nelson - $800k

Justin Miller - $800k

Matt Treanor - $800k

Doug Waecther - $625K

Dallas McPherson - $600k

Logan Kensing - $550k


Both of these guys can be offered arb, but highly unlikely for fear they actually accept it. No good comps to figure out a worth.


Luis Gonzalez - X

Paul Lo Duca - X



I would stop reading now if you trust me, as below is a lengthy arbitration comparable analysis.




Feel free to attack any analysis or ideas if you think I have overlooked something. Yea I know we aren't at the end-end of the year yet, but everything is pretty much set in stone at this point unless someone has a 4 HR/10 RBI game.


Mike Jacobs


Adrian Gonzalez (30 HR, 100 RBI, .843 OPS) - $3 million (part of long term buyout)

Casey Kotchman (11 HR, 68 RBI, .840 OPS) - $1.45 million (2008 arbitration)

Kevin Youkilis (16 HR, 83 RBI, .843 OPS) - $3 million (2008 arbitration)


Adam LaRoche (32 HR, 90 RBI, .915 OPS) - $3.2 million (2007 arbitration)

Lyle Overbay (19 HR, 72 RBI, .816 OPS) - $2.5 million (2006 arbitration)


Jacobs is currently at (32 HR, 92 RBI, .829 OPS). I love how Gonzalez/Kotchman/Youkilis completely show how crazy arbitration is with identical OPS scores, and then coupled with LaRoches dominant OPS score, still falls in the same pay range because of the HR/RBI numbers. Arbitration is retarded. Marlins can make a very good case with Jacobs low average/OBP, and lack of defense, but Jacobs might have the top quantitative power numbers of this mid range group of first baseman. Considering annual inflation and all, I find it very unlike Jacobs come in at or under $3 million. I dont think he can get to $4 with his flaws, but this should be $3.25-$3.75 easy. We can probably just say $3.5 give or take a few bucks and be fairly accurate.


Jorge Cantu


He is going to have 4+ years of experience, but I dont know if comparing him to 2nd year arbitration players is accurate considering his unique situation of being DFAd, not really playing last year, and then busting out. Here is some food for thought though. There is not a good comparable for 3B of recent history. You can always include the 1B above as well. It seems that $3 million year 4, and $5 million year 5, for a solid starting player is pretty standard across both positions.


David Wright (crazy production) - $5 mil year 4, $7.5 year 5, in buyout, with an accelerated year 3 salary and signing bonus. Just not a lot to look at with 3B.

Garret Atkins (25 HR, 111 RBI, .853 OPS - and coming off an enormous 2006 where he was the top 3B in baseball statistically) - $4.3 million (4th year salary, 2008 arbitration)

Bill Hall (35 HR, 85 RBI, .898 OPS) - $3 million (4th year salary, 2007, buyout)

X - $4.8 million (5th year salary, 2008, buyout). And yea, I know Hall isnt perfect because he has played a bunch of positions, but we just have nothing perfect to compare him too.

Joe Crede (30 HR, 94 RBI, .829 OPS) - $4.9 million (5th year salary, 2007, arbitration)

Joe Crede (22 HR, 62 RBI, .757 OPS) - $2.6 million (4th year salary, 2006, arbitration)


Cantu is currently at (29 HR, 93 RBI, .818 OPS). So do we go with 1st or 2nd year arbitration here? If its first year, I would predict at least $3.5, maybe up to $4 mil. Atkins has a better paper resume, especially with the prior year, but Cantu will have 30 bombs and very close to 100 RBI. That seems reasonable. However, Credes 2007 line is spot on time and performance wise (minus the defense), and that is $5 million bucks, two years ago. There is a very strong argument MLB will treat him as a 2nd year arbitration player here as he meets the paper definition. Thank god he didnt play much last year which will shave some of it down, but after looking at these comps, I find it very unlikely Cantu is below $4.5 million, and it could very easily go up. Thats a bit higher than I expected coming into this study. Cantu might be pricing himself off the team. I was not expecting to reach that conclusion. Maybe you guys can find a good argument at getting him lower, but I cant.


Josh Willingham , Jeremy Hermida, and Cody Ross.


Matt Diaz (around 400 PA , 12 HR, 45 RBI, .865 OPS. Coming off a year 2 of .839 OPS, around 300 PA) - $1.2 million (4th year arbitration)

Mark Teahen (7 HR, 60 RBI, .763 OPS, coming off 18/69/.874) - $2.3 (4th year arb)

Nick Swisher (22 HR, 78 RBI, .836 OPS, coming off a 35 HR/96 RBI .865 year 2) - $3.5 (4th year, part of a buyout)

Xavier Nady - (17 HR, 63 RBI, some sort of high .700 OPS I am eyeballing from his two teams) - $2.1 (4th year arb, 2007)

Michael Cuddyer (12 HR, 42 RBI, .752 OPS) - $1.3 arbitration (Year 4 arb, 2006)


Willingham is at 11 HR, 44 RBI, .798 OPS. He had 21/89/.827 last year. His resume is stronger than Diaz and Cuddyer because of more consistent playing time the previous year, and because they can argue injury derailed this year, but he never got to the Swisher mid .850 level a lot of us expected. The lack of PA will hurt him, but he still will probably get to $1.8 - 2 million. Just under Nady.


Jeremy Hermida is at 17/59/.729. Nady and Teahen are phenomenal comps. Especially Teahen, huge year 2, disappointing year 3. I can see him falling anywhere $2-2.5 million. Good arguments to put him over Teahen for the HR totals, but also for the lowest OPS and defense of the bunch. I go back and forth on this, but I will say he gets the high because of how salaries are inflating and how more HR will make arbitration guys happy. $2.5.


Cody Ross. Is coming off a monster 1.064 bench year, and is at 21/72/.819 right now. This is killing Teahen and Nady big time. Add in CF, and we are a very Nick Swisher line here. The Marlins can argue against Swishers OBP and power (did have the 35 HR season) so I dont think he gets all the way to him, but I think $3 million is pretty realistic for what the little guy is doing. It also makes things easy as we can refer to Hammer, Hermida, and Cody as $2-$2.5-$3, and be fairly accurate to their future salary.


Nolasco, Olsen, and Johnson. (Maybe Anibal pending hearing, but probably not)


Matt Cain 8-13, 3.91 era, 176 k, 1.35 whip, coming off a near identical 2007 - $2.65 (4th year, buyout)

Fausto Carmona 8-7, 5.19 era, 57 K, 1.59 whip, but coming off a 19-8, 3.06, 137 K, masterpiece where he was awarded a buyout. - $2.75 (4th year buyout)

Ian Snell 6-12, 5.54 era, 130 K, 1.81 whip (really? In 159 IP), but coming off a solid 9-12, 3.76 era, 177 K, 1.33 whip year. - $3 million (4th year buyout)

James Shields 13-8, 3.61 era, 152 K, 1.15 whip - $1.5 (4th year buyout, which will be 2010), however Shields has an incredibly unusual contract. 2006 CC, 2007 CC, 2008 $1, 2009 $1.5, 2010 $2.5, 2011 $4.25, differing levels of buyouts. Very unique contract with salary deflections in year 3 (double what they could have paid him) and with at least $1-2 million in buyout money in the future. This is very unscientific guesstimating, but that $1.5 is not accurate for these reasons. It probably comes to around $2.5-$3 in present money.


I think this is enough. There are probably some more comparables, but the pitching is pretty easy to do. I cant really find something for Johnson, but we can just crudely scale him down. I think we can say the Pirates over spent though. What a bunch of idiots.


Nolasco 15-7, 3.52 era, 171 K. Oh, and a 1.11 whip. Good lord. Coming off injury.

Scotty 8-10, 4.20 era, 107 K, and a 1.32 whip. Coming off a horrific 2007, but has thrown a lot of innings which is impressive for a player his age.

Johnson 6-1, 3.65 era, 76 K, 1.34 whip. Coming off injury.


Nolasco is Shields. I think the Marlins can easily argue out of Snells deal because he is overpriced compared to the three superior pitchers on the list. I think Carmona is pretty much what Nolasco can do, $2.75. This is in line with Shields which is the most recent deal, and slots him above Cains W/L record which you know would have killed him in arbitration if he went.


I think we can parallel Olsen and Cain closest after seeing their 2008 performances. Cain has K, ERA, and prior year advantages, but similar W/L and innings when it comes down to it. I think a $2.25 is reasonable. Again, I think the Marlins can easily argue out of Snells overblown deal both because Snell had a better 2007 than Olsens 2008, and because of the other market deals.


Johnson would be right there with Ricky probably if he had the full year, and a little better whip, but the lack of playing time and previous years injury are going to hurt him. I dont think he even gets above Olsen despite the fact hes a much better pitcher. I think $1.5 is realistic, and $2 mil is generous. If someone can find an injury, half year comp Id love to see. I'm splitting the difference above.


Dan Uggla


Chase Utley - 32 HR, 102 RBI, .906 OPS, 15 SB - $4.5 mil (4th year, buyout, and the deal is enormous with a signing bonus)

Brandon Phillips - 30 HR, 94 RBI, .816 OPS, 32 SB - $2.75 mil (4th year, buyout)

Ian Kinsler - .319-18-71, 26 SB - $3 mil (4th year buyout, happened before he blew up this year)

Aaron Hill - .291-17-78, .792 OPS - $2.59 mil (4th year buyout)

Freddie Sanchez - .344-6-85, .851 OPS - $2.75 (4th year arbitration, 2007)


Dan is .262, 31 HR, 89 RBI, .883 OPS, coming off all star performances, great first two years.


Utley's deal is probably worth a little more on the free market when you add in part of his signing bonus, and that the deal is a little lower because it is a long term deal. I'm thinking it is realistic to think Dan eclipses Utley's 4th year salary because of those reasons, and because it is a year later (inflation). It's going to be really hard for the Marlins to argue he doesn't deserve whatever he asks. I don't think he can get to the top middle infielder, being Hanley ($5.5), which is the next closet comparable, but he COULD get a nominal upgrade over Utley. I don't think the Marlins can argue Phillips or Kinsler, because of the HR and OPS advantages over them respectively. At most, they can argue Uggla shouldn't be outrageously above them, like at the $5 million range. I would lean to that argument. I am very uncertain, I would say the range is anywhere $4-5 million and I will not be surprised either way. But I'll guess right under Utley, $4.4 million.


Kevin Gregg


Chad Cordero - Year 5 - $6.2 million

Jose Valverde - Year 5 - $4.7 million

K-Rod, made $7 million and $10 million in years 5 and 6.

Putz, got a buyout. Made $3.4 in year 5, $5 in year 6.

Most importantly though, we have Fuentes making $5.05 in year 6.


Fuentes Three year Trends. Saves 31-30-20(lost job), consistent era 3.2 range, and whip high teens. He lost in arbitration, asking for $6.5 million. Gregg, closed for two years 31-29 (lost job), consistent 3.5 era, and whip high twenties. K numbers are about the same.


I think all rationality goes out of the window with closers, so let's call him $5 million. The same level of compensation as Putz and Fuentes, the two most recent. Fuentes is very comparable and I do not think you can place him above him.


Sergio Mitre


John Patterson got $850k coming off an injury plagued 2006, but it was his 4th year arbitration and not his 2nd year arbitration like Mitre. Probably have to slot Mitre a little bit higher on a renewal here. Maybe he gets a repeat of this year ($1.2 mil), or a little bit less, around $1 mil.




Endy Chavez - Hit .306, solid 375 PA with a .779 OPS. Coming off a horrible 2005, and a solid bench role (.688, I guess that's solid, 2004) - $1.75 million (4th year arbitration)


Little Alfredo has hit .260 with a .680 OPS for awhile. I'd say when you add in versatility, a better career, and inflation, this comes out to about the same rate even though Endy hit more in year 3. $1.75 mil. We're talking a nominal difference so this is a solid estimate.


Kensing, Waecther, J. Nelson, and J. Miller


Matt Guerrier (88 IP, 2.35 era, 1.05 whip, 68K, decent year 2) - $950k (4th year arbitration)

Jon Rauch (87 IP, 3.61 era, 1.10 whip, 71K, 4 S, good year 2) - $1.2 mil (4th year, part of buyout)

Justin Miller (61 IP, 3.65 era, 1.25 whip, 74 K, skeptical prior career) - $750k (4th year arbitration)

Kevin Gregg (78 IP, 4.14 era, 1.39 whip, 71 K, bad prior year) - $575k (4th year arb, 2007)

Rafael Betancourt (56 IP, 3.81 era, 1.11 whip, 48 K, 3 S, excellent year 2) - $840k (4th year arb, 2007)


This is a solid baseline. Guerrier made a little more than Betancourt from inflation, Rauch gets the most because he was being 'groomed' for the closer spot, and Miller had a good year so he gets a little bit more than Gregg.


Kensing (55 IP, 4.23 era, 1.50 whip, 55K) - we're looking at $550k. He doesn't have the resume of everyone to get anything more than a small bump over club controlled years.

Waecther (63 IP, 3.69 era, 1.33 whip, 46K) - This seems to fall between Miller and Gregg. I don't think the lack of K's is really effecting him to much. This should be around $600-650k averaging the difference.

J. Nelson (51 IP, 2.10 era, 1.23 whip, 58k, 1 S) - Pretty good. The lack of doing anything in 2007 will hurt him a bit, but he should be able to get up to at least Miller, and maybe a little higher. I think $800k would be a reasonable estimate.

J. Miller (47 IP, 4.24 era, 1.41 whip, 43 K) - Two things here, first he is not on the 40 man roster so the Marlins would have to put him back on it for him not to become a minor league free agent. Second, he is 5th year eligible and the rest are 4th year eligible. He would probably get a nominal upgrade based on this despite the worse year. He'd probably be $800k.




He had 2.164 days of service time, not including his call up. This will make him eligible. Can't really do much with a 14 PA 2008 so far, so have to look at other things. Cantu is going to make $600k this year (after PA incentives). I can't really think of anyone recent who fits this mold. I think it's safe to say McPherson will make more than his $425k, but I don't know how much more he can climb over this. $500k? $600k? $750k? I think Cantu could really be a baseline. $600k




Catchers of his caliber get DFA'd by 2nd year arbitration. He'd probably get a thanks for showing up upgrade to like $800, from his 2008 $700k. I'm over it.




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So, using your system, lets see how much my projected future lineup would cost:



Starters- Baker, Sanchez, Coghlan, Ramirez, Cantu, Raynor, Maybin, Ross = $15,005,000


Bench- Treanor, McPherson, Andino, Amezaga, Hermida = $6,055,000


Starters- Johnson, Nolasco, Volstad, Sanchez, Miller = $6,620,000


Bullpen- Lindstrom, Tankersly, Tucker, De La Cruz, Nelson, Waechter, Kensing = $3,610,000


Total 2009 Florida Marlins Payroll = $31,290,000



I think its very affordable, and it would make a great team.

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Out of the tandem of Hammer, Hermida, and Ross there seems to be a good chance that we retain two of the three next year. Still, I was hoping Hermida would come cheaper given the off year. With Hanley's 5.5 mil, i'm guessing the payroll is going to have to be a minimum of $32 million next year.

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Not sure if this is helpful but I found a list on a Marlins website with the players current salary and their projected salary.




Lou did a pretty nice job and backed his thoughts up. But I think his numbers are a little high. And the terminology on Paulie and Gonzo are wrong. They can't go to arbitration. They can be offered new contracts. They are FAs. Also, Helms has a club option at $3.75 mil or the team is on the hook for a $750K buy out. I didn't notice if you even mentioned him.


These are the numbers I keep seeing being tossed around, with the exception of Uggla's being a little high.


My prediction on the 2009 payroll????.......We will have one. Which is far better than Vegas or San Antonio having one.

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Lou did a pretty nice job and backed his thoughts up. But I think his numbers are a little high. And the terminology on Paulie and Gonzo are wrong. They can't go to arbitration. They can be offered new contracts. They are FAs.

They can both be offered arbitration. The idea would be that they turn it down, and the Marlins get Type B Free Agent compensation in return.


And let me know what is high. Show me who is a better comparable for service time and performance and I can figure out an adjusted figure.

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SP- Nolasco, JJ, Volstad, Sanchez, Mitre (6.4 M)


Pos.- Cantu, Uggla, Ramirez, Sanchez, Baker, Willingham, Maynor, Hermida (20.2)


Bench- Treanor, McPherson, Almezaga, DeAza, Gonzo (4.6)


Relievers- Lindtrom, Pinto, Tucker, Owens or Nelson, A. Miller, J. Miller or Gardner, Tank (4.1)


Since relief is the reason the Marlins are not in the playoffs this year, Uggla or Cantu could be swapped for some. Also Hermida or Willingham. Other than relief the team is in good shape for next year.


Switch them

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I don't know if I agree with that. This ownership has shown no inclination to allow payroll to exceed $ 20 million, because they did nothing to increase payroll when it was imperitive for a playoff push.


If I was a young player on this team, I would definately just believe I am biding my time, until I am a Free Agent, because this ownership is not in it to win, but to be as cheap as possible.


How long until we see kids not sign with the Marlins because they understand this ownership will never pay them until they get to be FA's ? We could be in for the next holdout like JD Drew.

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Trade Olsen

Trade Willingham

Trade Gregg

Trade Jacobs


Retain Johnson

Retain Uggla

Retain Hermida

Retain Cantu

Retain McPherson

Retain Nolasco

Retain Amezega

Retain Treanor

Retain Ross

Retain Nelson

Retain Waechter


Payroll sits in and around $30 million


Add on a legitimate back of the bullpen guy and this is a playoff type team

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I don't know if I agree with that. This ownership has shown no inclination to allow payroll to exceed $ 20 million, because they did nothing to increase payroll when it was imperitive for a playoff push.


If I was a young player on this team, I would definately just believe I am biding my time, until I am a Free Agent, because this ownership is not in it to win, but to be as cheap as possible.


How long until we see kids not sign with the Marlins because they understand this ownership will never pay them until they get to be FA's ? We could be in for the next holdout like JD Drew.

I think this is pretty ridiculous.


There are outside factors, like the team not being a real contender in 2008 (despite their season), which dictates personnel issues before the year and it's clear the Marlins will not pay for any excess in a non-contending year. All of the pitchers were hurt before they year if you remember. It's amazing this team is over .500 right now, and it's not because of payroll. Further, you want to argue if they spent money they could have gotten better production out of their FA acquisitions, Cantu ($600k). It's not like they could have done anything. Non-issue.


This also has nothing to do with adding anything at the break (which they did anyways with Rhodes, who they gave up a very solid SP prospect for). And acquired a useful player like LoDuca in waivers. Non-issue.


The Marlins have a long history of signing all their picks to reasonable contracts. Plus, have a better development reputation than a lot of other teams, and we are not scared of playing young players. A young guy would be lucky to get drafted into our organization for those reasons. Why should a young player care about not getting a long term contract after their club controlled years? You have no argument here. Non-issue.


And Hanley got a contract. And now they have a stadium so they will be able to retain more of the team on a steady basis. Non-issue.


When you add everything up, with the Marlins have an outside shot at contending in 2009 if all the pitching stays healthy, you'd expect more of the team to be kept together. They will have defections for sure, (Gregg, Olsen, and Jacobs are 100% gone in my head, and they will shed around half of Willingham, Uggla, Cantu, Ross, Hermida, Mitre, Treanor, the other RP, the bench players), but none of that is really a big deal. $$$$$ isn't making this team a winner. Growing up is. They only need to keep a few of the older guys (Cantu, Ross, Amezaga, some of the RP) around to bridge the gap to all the kids (Tucker, Maybin, Coghlan, G. Sanchez, McPherson). That can easily be done for $30-35 and not lose anyone that important to the longterm juggernaut that is currently forming.

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