The New York Yankees have made some bold moves over the offseason so far. They’ve catapulted themselves back up the spending ladder (estimated at $173M for ’17), but still are below the free wheeling Boston Red Sox who almost have a $191M payroll for the 2017 season.
The Phillies have jettisoned salary but really haven’t gone on any spending sprees of late. The Phils have added two players that will tack a $27M amount onto the payroll for just one year, but still have a payroll that is estimated to be well under $100M for 2017 so far.
The Phillies haven’t been this low in salary since before the success of the 2008 World Series team. In fact, the team is at a level it was in 2006 or before. This is well off of all-time records set by the Phils in salary spending in the 2012 and 2014 seasons when the team spent more than it ever did in salaries for one season of baseball.
In 2012, the Phillies spent a record $172M for their Opening Day 25-man roster, culminating the big salaries they handed out after winning the World Series in 2008. They should have been making moves in the few years after the win, but never did. The Phils management led by Ruben Amaro Jr. was very reluctant to break up the success that they perceived was still capable of making it to the playoffs and winning again. After a dip in spending in 2013, the team then went out and set the all-time spending record for the Phils for their Opening Day payroll in 2014 of $177M, and ended up paying out about $183M by the end of the season. Again, no success on the field by that team and Ruben was headed out the door by Phillies management.
As of now, Jeremy Hellickson will be the highest paid on the Phillies at $17.2M for one season, somehow, I don’t think the Phillies are done adding for 2017 yet. The hot stove season hasn’t really got to a boil yet, and there are plenty of moves that the Phillies can still make.