Money Doesn't Assure a Playoff Spot

With the Yankees spending nearly a half-billion dollars on three free agents, Sabathia, Teixeira and Burnett, it is interesting to see how the teams that spent the most money fared in the playoff races.

Big spenders earned their way into the playoffs only two of four times in the National League; Cubs (#5) and Los Angeles (#6)) and American League, Los Angeles (#6), White Sox (#9). Among the top 10, the Yankees (#1), Mets (#3), Detroit (#4) and Seattle (#8) and all watched with the rest of us on TV. Tampa (#28) proved that using your money properly would do you in good stead.

We used the Associated Press report on the final 2008 payrolls for the 30 major league clubs. The information came from the commissioner's office. Figures are for the respective club's 40-man roster.

Totals include salaries and pro-rated shares of signing bonuses, earned incentive bonuses, non-cash compensation, buyouts of unexercised options and cash transactions. In some cases, parts of salaries that are deferred are discounted to reflect present-day values.

The Dodgers were second in payroll in the National League. Milwaukee (#9) paid the least for their preseason slot.

The National League by division

 WEST
LA Dodgers     $125,864,496
San Francisco    82,074,873
Arizona 	 80,998,526
Colorado 	 74,791,621
San Diego 	 71,212,182

 CENTRAL
Chicago Cubs 	130,508,691
St. Louis 	109,989,046
Houston 	100,189,948
Milwaukee 	 90,324,347
Cincinnati 	 82,886,440
Pittsburgh 	 50,764,410

 EAST 
Philadelphia 	112,654,711
Atlanta 	 92,494,314
Minnesota 	 65,096,667
Washington 	 59,699,668
Florida 	 27,003,450

 All teams
N.Y. Yankees   $222,519,480
Boston 	        147,075,645
New York Mets	144,693,962
Detroit 	136,198,404
Chicago Cubs 	130,508,691

Anaheim Angels 	128,142,467
LA Dodgers	125,864,496
Seattle 	120,456,113	
Chi White Sox	113,641,026
Philadelphia 	112,654,711

St. Louis 	109,989,046
Houston 	100,189,948
Toronto 	 98,343,520
Atlanta 	 92,494,314
Milwaukee 	 90,324,347

Cincinnati 	 82,886,440
San Francisco 	 82,074,873
Arizona 	 80,998,526
Baltimore 	 78,888,250
Cleveland 	 78,663,582

Texas 	         78,640,138
Colorado 	 74,791,621
San Diego 	 71,212,182
Kansas City 	 69,297,547
Minnesota 	 65,096,667

Washington 	 59,699,668
Oakland 	 55,223,294
Tampa Bay 	 51,020,720
Pittsburgh 	 50,764,410
Florida 	 27,003,450
  Total      $2,879,357,538

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