With their trade of Francisco Lindor and Carlos Carrasco, the Cleveland Indians now have the lowest payroll in Major League Baseball.
The Cleveland Indians’ primary goal this offseason was to shed as much payroll as possible. They had done that through declining affordable team options, letting solid players go without a second thought. Then, on Thursday, the Indians made the move they had been hoping for all offseason – trading Francisco Lindor to get his salary off of their books.
With Lindor, and Carlos Carrasco, having departed, the Indians’ focus on their bottom line may be complete. The team now has the lowest payroll in the majors at just $35 million.
To put that number in perspective, the Pirates and Rays are considered to be two of the cheapest organizations in the game. The Pirates estimated payroll for Opening Day is approximately $47 million, while the Rays check in at a comparatively robust $57 million.
This may not be the last of the moves for the Indians either. Jose Ramirez would be highly sought after if he was on the trade block, and at $9.4 million, would be considered a relative bargain. Roberto Perez may be harder to trade, but there are plenty of teams looking for help behind the plate that could have interest.
It is also worth noting that the Dolan’s are one of the wealthiest owners in the majors. With a net worth of $4.6 billion, the Dolan family are the fourth richest owners in the majors. However, they are refusing to spend any money on the team, sending away their top players over the past few years.
Yes, the pandemic has hurt majority of the teams in the league. Free agency is at a crawl due to uncertainty around the upcoming season and revenue losses last year. But for an owner that has a net worth of that much, slashing payroll to the point where the team is looking up at the Pirates and Rays is an embarrassment.
The Cleveland Indians now have the lowest payroll in the majors. Mission accomplished.