MLB Franchise Notes: Padres' Payroll Up, But Remains Among League's Lowest
In San Diego, Bill Center reports the Padres' payroll at the start of the '13 season "will be just around" $70M. The total includes approximately $65M "for the 25 players on the projected Opening Day roster," $3.5M in "buyouts paid" to former players and around $1.5M to four players opening the season on the disabled list. While the Padres' payroll this season represents a $12M gain over last year and a $32M increase over '10, it will "still rank among the lowest" in MLB. Most of the increase from '12 is "represented by bigger contracts for arbitration-eligible players" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 3/18).
HOUSTON FANS DESERVE BETTER: The Astros are likely to start the season with a payroll around $25M, and ESPN’s J.A. Adande said that is "not fair" to fans, especially when Minute Maid Park "was built with $180 million in public funds." Adande: "If you want the fans to come out, you have to invest in that team.” Denver Post columnist Woody Paige said teams “are a public trust, and so they have to make the effort to go out and improve the team” (“Around the Horn,” ESPN, 3/15).
ANOTHER GREEN INITIATIVE: MLB.com's Jane Lee noted the A's launched the fourth season of their "Green Collar Baseball" campaign Saturday when the club "introduced its new line of television commercials to the media." This year's commercials feature "plenty of humor," with A's RF Josh Reddick and CF Coco Crisp "landing the majority of air time." Manager Bob Melvin and coaches Mike Gallego and Chip Hale were "also given a good amount of lines," while Ps Sean Doolittle, Ryan Cook and Jarrod Parker all made "their commercial debuts." Gallego "handles a possum in one of the ads," while another spot features a "guru meditating with Crisp, Doolittle, Parker and Reddick." Crisp and Reddick are featured "testing out different pie alternatives -- think pizza, spaghetti and ham," and they also "team up in another ad that features the Bernie Lean" (MLB.com, 3/16).
RYAN EXPRESS ON THE RAILS: Rangers President of Baseball Operations & GM Jon Daniels said of team CEO Nolan Ryan, "I hope he doesn’t leave. I think we’ve got a good thing going. I think we work really well together and not just he and I, I’m talking about 150 or so people. I’m speaking for the baseball side of the organization. I’m sure you could say the same about the business side. We have a really good thing going where everyone kind of pulls on the end of the rope" (DALLASNEWS.com, 3/16).