Friday, January 22, 2010

What do the Padres do with $7 million?

Friday January 22, 2010

Jed Hoyer and Jeff Moorad have both said in XX 1090 interviews recently that the team is still looking to sign a veteran starting pitcher and a veteran backup catcher.

So who is left for them to choose from?

Here is a list of the biggest name Free Agent Starting Pitchers still on the market.

Right Hand Starting Pitchers
Ben Sheets,
Pedro Martinez,
Jon Garland,
Braden Looper,
John Smoltz,
Chien-Ming Wang,
Livan Hernandez,
Todd Wellemeyer.

Jarrod Washburn,
Erik Bedard,
Noah Lowry.

The Padres have already kicked the tires on Jose Contreras and Noah Lowry and come away without making any offers.(Contreras agreed to terms with the Phillies today according to Enrique Rojas of ESPN )

Sheets, Garland and Bedard are all widely thought to be asking more than the Padres are able to pay.

So other than the Padres, what teams are still in the market for a veteran starting pitcher? The Dodgers, Mets, Mariners and Cleveland have huge holes in their starting rotation. Cleveland has no room in their budget so they are probably out of the mix.

The Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Nationals, and Pirates could also use a starter, but more for depth than out of need for a front line guy.

My thinking is that with the 2010 payroll currently being more than $7 million under $40 million the Padres may be able to make a run at any of those guys.

I would prefer to see that money spent on a potential front of the rotaion guy like Sheets, but signing a future Hall of Fame pitcher like Martinez makes sense from the standpoint of what he could teach all the young pitchers on the Padres staff.

Lowry, if finally healthy, could be a good signing, but I don't see him as significantly better option than the kids like LeBlanc, Stauffer and Gallagher that he would be blocking.

How about catchers?

Among guys that could be starters its pretty much Yorvit Torrealba and Rod Barajas.  Brad Ausmus, Paul Bako, and Jose Molina round out the list of catchers still on the market.

Torrealba turned down a two year $5.6 million deal with the Rockies in December, so he could be priced well out of the Padres range.

Barajas started 125 games for the Blue Jays last season so he is probably looking for a situation where he can be a starter and that is not the case in Padreville.

Ausmus is a San Diego county resident and other than the Padres and Dodgers, his only real option is to retire. He would be my choice. a good defensive catcher who calls a great game, Ausmus could teach Hundley the finer points of catching.

So who else is in the market? The Dodgers, Rangers and of course, the Padres. Maybe the Yankees as well, but mainly as a minor league signing.

The Padres should still be able to come away with a good backup.

2010 Padres Payroll

Friday January 22, 2010

Been hearing lots of talk about what the Padres have left in payroll. Talk from Hoyer and Moorad. Talk from Correy Brock and others. Talk of just $5-6 million being available to spend.

I thought it best to take a look myself. Math was never my strong point, but spreadsheets do all the math for you if you ask them to, so I am pretty sure the numbers are correct.

Here goes.  

The San Diego Padres Payroll as of January 22, 2010

Player Name              Position    2010 Salary

Tied up for 2010      
Chris Young                  SP         $  6,375,000.00
Adrian Gonzalez            1B         $  4,825,000.00
David Eckstein              2B         $  1,000,000.00
Kevin Correia           RHP/SP     $  3,600,000.00
Heath Bell                 RHP/RP     $  4,000,000.00
Mike Adams             RHP/RP     $  1,000,000.00
Committed                                 $20,800,000.00
Arbitration Eligible                  Expected Salary
Scott Hairston              OF          $  2,900,000.00         ($2.1 - $2.9 million)
Arbitration Subtotals                 $ 2,900,000.00
Free Agent Signings      
Jerry Hairston               Util          $ 2,125,000.00

Free Agent Signing Subtotals   $ 2,125,000.00
NOT Arbitration Eligible / Under Team Control      
Headley, Chase          OF/3B       $450,000.00
Gonzalez, Edgar           UT           $450,000.00
Hundley, Nick              C             $450,000.00
Venable, Will              OF            $450,000.00
Cabrera, Everth           SS            $450,000.00
Kyle Blanks                 OF           $450,000.00
Oscar Salazar              UT            $450,000.00
Tony Gwynn Jr.           OF            $450,000.00
Aaron Cunningham      OF            $450,000.00
Greg Burke                  RHP         $450,000.00
Luke Gregerson           RHP         $450,000.00
Mujica, Edward           RHP         $450,000.00
Thatcher, Joe               LHP         $450,000.00
Aaron Poreda              LHP         $450,000.00
Sean Gallagher             RHP         $450,000.00
Luis Perdomo              RHP          $450,000.00
Adam Russell               RHP          $450,000.00
LeBlanc, Wade            LHP          $450,000.00
Mat Latos                    RHP          $450,000.00
Tim Stauffer                 RHP          $450,000.00
Clayton Richard           LHP          $450,000.00
Team Control Subtotals             $  9,000,000.00

Totals                                          $34,825,000.00

Yes I know there are way too many pitchers. 16 in all. So subtract $1.8 million for 4 guys at $450,000 and you are at $33.025 million. Viola!      

Total 2010 Padres Payroll           $33,025,000.00

Now I must admit that we don't know exactly what the players under team control will be paid in 2010, but since the major league minimum is $400,000, I would bet that an average of $450,000 would be pretty dang close or maybe even a tad high. If anyone knows a way to find out what the average was for last year, please let me know and I will adjust the figures here.

I am also guessing that Hairston, Scott that is, signs for somewhere close to $2.5 million or the mid way point between the arbitration figures of $2.9 million he asked for and the $2.1 the Padres offered.

Now as to where the Payroll ends up in 2010, I have to rely on the Padres front office. Both Moorad and Hoyer have been quoted as saying the Padres payroll for the 2010 season would start with a 4(four). Since they are $28+ million over $4 million, I would have to guess they mean $40 million or more.

$40 million minus $33.0 million = $7.0 million still available.

If Scott Hairston signs for $2.5 and I have overestimated the average salary of the players under team control, then the Padres could very well have $7.5 - $8 .0 million still available to sign free agents and still stay under $40 million budgeted for payroll.

Now the question becomes who do the Padres target with the money they have left to spend?

Editors Note 1/26/2010:
With the Padres signing of Jon Garland to a $4.7 million/1 year deal today, the Padres 2010 Payroll stands at $37.725 million and Corey Brock of has posted on Twitter that the Padres have no money left to spend on what is now the lowest payroll in baseball.

Editors Note 2/2/2010:
The Padres signed Scott Hairston to a $2.45 million 1 year deal to avoid arbitration. That puts the Padres payroll at about $37,275,000.00

That leaves the Padres about $6.459 million under last seasons $43,734,200.00 payroll
Can you say Orlando Hudson?