Blog Entry

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

Posted on: February 5, 2010 1:29 pm
Edited on: February 5, 2010 1:31 pm
Do you realize the Twins now have more money committed to their 2010 payroll than the Cardinals do? More than the Braves? As much as the big-spending Mariners?

With Orlando Hudson signing a one-year, $5 million deal to be Minnesota's new second baseman, the Twins now have $93 million committed for 2010. Add in money for the players not yet under contract (and not eligible for arbitration), and the Twins are looking at about a $96 million opening day payroll, as Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune pointed out .

Sorry, but when you're knocking on the door of $100 million, we can't call you small-budget anymore.

"We like that designation," general manager Bill Smith insisted.

It's hard to tell exactly where the Twins payroll will rank, but they're basically guaranteed to be in the top half of MLB payrolls, for the first time since they ranked eighth in 1989 (they should be somewhere around 10th this year). To show how things have changed in those last 21 years, the Twins' 1989 payroll was $15.5 million, not all that much different from the Dodgers, who spent $25.6 million to rank first that year.

Ten years ago, the Twins were still spending $15.6 million, but by that point the Yankees were at $92.9. Since then, the Twins have usually ranked somewhere in the 20s among the 30 big-league teams (they were 24th last year).

Why the change? Obviously, the move to Target Field is a big part of it.

"We're in a good position," Smith said. "We have a lot of good players, we've had some success on the field, and we're moving into a new ballpark. Anytime you're on a roll, you've got to try to keep it going.

"When our payroll was low, we always said it's not about money, it's about players. That's still true."

The Twins have enough good players (and a few great ones) that they've won the American League Central five of the last eight years, even when they were being badly outspent. But as those players have gotten more experienced, they've also become more expensive, which is why the Twins payroll has risen so much without any really big free-agent acquisitions.

Of the $93 million committed for 2010, more than 40 percent of it goes to three players: Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau and Joe Nathan.

It's expected that the Twins will get Mauer signed to a new long-term contract in the coming weeks, but that won't necessarily change what they spend this year. Mauer is already signed for $12.5 million for 2010 under his existing deal.

In any case, it's hard to call the Twins cheap. It's hard to call them small-budget, whether they like the designation or not.


Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: February 20, 2012 3:56 pm

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 3:46 am

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 31, 2011 5:40 am

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 5, 2011 10:48 pm

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

Since: Nov 19, 2011
Posted on: December 4, 2011 4:05 am

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 3, 2011 10:11 pm

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

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Since: Oct 21, 2011
Posted on: October 22, 2011 2:23 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Oct 7, 2011
Posted on: October 13, 2011 3:42 am

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

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Since: Nov 8, 2007
Posted on: June 23, 2011 10:52 am

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

Spend Money to make money. Look at Jerry Jones with Dallas. Made money elsewhere, spend HIS money, and I'm guessing he is reaping the rewards of it.

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: February 8, 2010 11:09 pm

Low-budget Twins? Not anymore

Forbes magazine estimated his (Pohlad) 2008 net worth at $3.6 billion
George Steinbrenner's estimated net worth is $1.15 billion USD in 2009

Personal net worth means squat... actually it means even less then that.   Personal is exactly that... PERSONAL...

Steinbrenner's Yankees bring in more money with their tv deals then the Twins and almost any other team in MLB can even dream of bringing in.   He uses that money to sign free agents and that is the only reason they can do what they do.

If Steinbrenner had to spend over 100 million dollars out of pocket to sign CC to a contract it never would have happened.  Regardless of what anybody says or writes, unless a team in sports is losing big dollars and the owner can't sell they NEVER spend their own money.

And why should Pohlad spend money he made elsewhere?  Lets not pretend that we know what he nets from the Twins either because none of us can even come close to knowing or understanding how much revenue he really nets after expenses and taxes......

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