With David Wright's contract details finally revealed it seemed like a good time to update the old salary spreadsheet and dare to dream about what kind of extravagant presents Santa-Sandy might tuck under the big blue and orange tree a year from now.
After all in a mere 10 months Santa-Na and his 31-million gifts will no longer be in Santa-Sandy's bag. That means for the first time since the Bernie-Grinch fed the reindeer those fungus tainted oats, the elves known as Fred & Jeff can stop stealing presents and pony up for some new ones even if they cost 31 million right?
Well not quite. Some of our favorites have been on Santa's nice list and will deserve more gifts next year than they'll find under this years tree . . . there's the aforementioned Captain D whose 11 million gifts this year will swell to 20 million next year but hey, he's worth it and it still leaves 22 million for new gifts right?
Well, most of us agree the Great RA from Dickeyville deserves as many gifts as he asks for, but even if Santa decides to give him a mere 11 million in 2014 that's 6 million more than this year so our total for new gifts drops to 16 million.
And the Sir Neise of Southpaw will collect 2 million more. Barring another trip to the desert or other lands of funky fevers, the tyke known as Ike will likely be in line for a couple million more as might the Hammer made by the Irish elves and likely a modest stocking stuffer for Parnell. So another 6+ million for the homegrown-foursome brings our amount left down to 10 million above this year.
But the Jay by the Bay frees up money doesn't he? Well every dollar gained for this season is paid for over the next two . . . in fact for each of the two following seasons Bay will be due $7.5m - a cool $1.5m more than this year. Now we're down to $8.5m more freed up.
Luckily, Frank Francisco's $6.5m come off the books so we're back up to $15m more presents in 2014. Not bad, but not $31m. Especially if we still have multiple OF vacancies. This season a $10m AAV would have gotten Angel Pagan back, $12m AAV would have netted Kevin Youkalis, and a $13m AAV Mike Napoli or Shane Victorino.
So expiring contracts do provide some wiggle room but if we still need multiple upgrades it's going to take an ownership willing to spend more. Actually spending $105 this year would help if it plugs a hole in a meaningful way - it would also increase the baseline for next season which would be most welcome. But the bottom line is that while Johan removes $31m from next year's ledger there may be much less than that available to be spent on new toys. A very large portion is already committed to raises/arb bumps next season.