Thursday, May 23, 2013

Update on Success vs. Salary

As of today, only two, the Cleveland Indians and Pittsburgh Pirates, of the bottom five teams in salary rank in the top ten of winning percentage. This is mainly due to recent struggles by the Oakland Athletics and that many of the low salary teams are currently in the rebuilding process, almost assuring them minimal success this season. The Pirates, in fact, rank third in the league for winning percentage and second in the National League. Some low payroll teams, though, rank just outside of the top ten, for example the Colorado Rockies rank eleventh in the league. As for high payroll teams that have not demonstrated success this year, the Los Angeles Dodgers, who have the second highest team salary in the league, rank twenty-second in the league for winning percentage, and they are last in their respective division. After handing out the highest contract in the league this offseason, to Zack Greinke, and trading with the Boston Red Sox for former all-stars last season, the Dodgers have attempted to battle freak injuries and extreme struggles, but have failed miserably to the tune of a 19-26 record. Another high payroll team that has failed thus far in the season is the Los Angeles Angels, who rank seventh in salary but twenty-fifth in winning percentage. Similar to the Dodgers, the Angels signed a superstar free agent, Josh Hamilton, to a $125 million contract this offseason, which they thought would assume them a rebound from last year's struggles. Much to their misfortune, the Angels have also battled injuries and slumps from several of their key players, giving them a very disappointing 19-27 record, and pushing them to second-to-last in the AL West, standing only in front of the rebuilding Houston Astros. Although it is still fairly early in the season, the success of several low salary teams and struggles of the Dodgers and other high salary teams proves that a high payroll does not ensure a high winning percentage.

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