The cost of success in Major League Baseball? How about a $140 million payroll. That’s the massive number the Washington Nationals have to deal with, and team owner Mark Lerner says the well is running dry according to the Washington Post.
“We’re beyond topped out. Our payroll has skyrocketed to like $140 million. It’s in the papers. I don’t think we can go much further with the revenue streams that we have.” – Nationals owner Mark Lerner
Well, to be accurate, the Nationals started the season with a $134.7 million payroll, putting them at ninth in the league, and an increase of over $25 million from last relative flop. That’s a lot of money to pay for 86 wins and a ticket to the couch in October.
According to Lerner, the Nationals don’t have any wiggle room in their budget for additional salaries this season and the team will proceed “smartly” with future signings.
Proceeding “smartly” (or frugally) would be a different approach for the success-hungry Nats, who have four players – Jayson Werth, Ryan Zimmerman, Adam LaRoche and Rafael Soriano – all scheduled to make $11 million or more in 2014.
When the Lerner family purchased the team from MLB in 2006, they said that it would be 10 years before the family would see any profit. Perhaps that was a kind estimate?