Blue Jays Look Forward To Eventual Payroll Boost

When you think of deep-pocketed AL East teams, you think of the Yankees and Red Sox. But the Blue Jays once had one of the biggest payrolls in the game and their president says it can happen again.

"With this city, with this country, with our market, we should be a city that can have $140 or $150MM in the way of salaries," team president Paul Beeston said at the State of the Franchise even in Toronto last night. "We should be able to support that and that's the direction that we're headed to."

The Blue Jays' payroll will likely sit in the $65-70MM range this year, though the precise figure will depend on how arbitration cases with Jose Bautista, Frank Francisco and Jason Frasor turn out and whether GM Alex Anthopoulos acquires more players.

As aggressive as Anthopoulos was on the trade market, the Blue Jays have been relatively quiet in free agency this offseason. They're one of eight teams that didn't sign a free agent to a multiyear deal, but that could change in a few years, as the club becomes more aggressive in free agency. And whether it's trades, free agency or the draft, the Blue Jays say that they make their moves with one primary goal in mind.

“We’re not here to be a competitive baseball team," Beeston said. "We’re here to win the World Series on a sustainable basis.”


101 Responses to Blue Jays Look Forward To Eventual Payroll Boost Leave a Reply

  1. aaforprimeminister 5 years ago

    They will not be signing big name (31+ year old) FAs. The money will go to long term contracts for players they draft, international FAs, as well as prospects and young players they trade for. The players will be locked up a couple of years into their MLB careers and extended through guaranteed deals or options till they are 32/33 years old. At which point AA will let them walk so the Yankees and Red Sox can sign them to stupid contracts that pay them $20mil per year when they are 37/8 years old (which only made sense before drug testing when guys that age were still setting HR records)

    • FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 5 years ago

      Come on. Let’s not drink too much kool-aid yet.
      I love AA and the direction he’s going, but we’re Still far behind the yanks rsox and rays.
      We’re catching up quickly though

  2. Jays are going to be stacked in less then 5years!!!!

  3. Lunchbox45 5 years ago

    It will be a long time before they achieve that payroll.

    It will also take a while for the fans to start coming back to the stadium.

    A second wild card position will help big time for Toronto, because they could be behind 2 of the Yanks, Rays or Sox and still get in to the playoffs.

    Not like the leafs or raps r going to make it any time soon

    • MB923 5 years ago

      I believe the 2nd wild card might start next season.

      • Selig has said it’s off the table for next season.

      • slider32 5 years ago

        What about the Rangers, A’s, and Angels, not to mention the Rays, W-Sox, and Tigers. They are all better than the Jays.

        • Lunchbox45 5 years ago

          in 2011 yes

        • on paper yes, but $$$ and offseason activity do not always equal wins. it is very possible that the jays finish ahead of a few of those teams, case and point last year.

          jays have only been a downright bad team once in the last 6 years, so i doubt they’re gonna fall off the board all of a sudden. they will be competitive, tho obviously not contenders

    • $5427573 5 years ago

      I bet Rogers Stadium will sell out that entire series if the Jays make it to the post season.

  4. timmytwoshoezzz 5 years ago

    Signing Albert Pujols next offseason will certainly help them get to their payroll projections, and get to winning too!

  5. Hello Pujols/Fielder

  6. ClimaClub 5 years ago

    as it stands right now the jays can easily afford 100 mil, the 140-150 mil projection is valid if the team is sucessfull and the fans return.
    the jays are owned by a multi billion dollar company, that owns the stadium, tv channel and radio stations.

    • This is true, but one must remember that Rogers is indeed the most penny-pinching company out there… The sentiment is nice, but I seriously can’t see the Jays payroll going anywhere over $80MM, which already seems like quite a stretch… Rogers is clearly putting more emphasis on financial gain rather than creating a competitive ballclub. What else would explain the outright gift of Rios to the White Sox?

      • BlueJaysFTW 5 years ago

        They are so penny-pinching they recently put in an offer to by Toronto Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment for 1.2 billion dollars.

        • bbbman 5 years ago

          Yes, penny pinching. That’s why they put it in a lowball bid like that.

      • rios was having a terrible season and had just signed a long term deal. its called getting rid of a mistake while you can. talented player, had a nice year for the whitesox for sure, but i found him to be disappointing even when he was playing well, kind of like vernon wells last year.

        there is still plenty of time for chicago to regret that waiver pickup. hes signed thru 2014 and his price tag is only going up.

      • vilifyingforce 5 years ago

        Maybe the amount of money Rios was earning, his lacklustre effort/attitude, and his amazing .750 OPS had something to do with it. Juan Rivera could easily be better then Rios next season at less then half the money. Hell, John Buck had a better season last year and made $2M instead of $10M.

        Are you also accusing Paul Beeston of lying when he said he could see the Jays having $140-150MM payroll?

    • slider32 5 years ago

      What have they been doing for the last 10 or more years.

      • MiltonMan 5 years ago

        See ” J.P. Ricciardi’s 5-Year Plan “….we’re all still trying to forget.

  7. Assuming the Jays aren’t signing Pujols (likely to resign) or Fielder (sabremetrics vs Boras), there’s not a lot out there to spend money on for 2012. Chris Carpenter/Roy Oswalt as a horse/mentor for the staff might make some sense, but the free agent pitching class is otherwise thin, Reyes makes no sense with Yunel in the fold and there’s not much else out there in the way of AA’s elite ceiling philosophy. If they’re investing in free agents, it’ll be in 2013 and beyond.

    • $5427573 5 years ago

      With our pitching prospects (now and future) I don’t see the Jays shopping for SP for quite some time. I do seem them attempting to make a big play for big bats in the future though. Imagine a Bautista – Fielder/Pujols 3-4 combo with a couple on-base fiends batting infront of them. Quite deadly

      • I have to admit it would be really interesting if Fielder signed with the Jays. His Dad used to play for the Jays, so for that reason he would get a much warmer reception from the fans of TO.

        • vilifyingforce 5 years ago

          Unless he’s making north of $200M, falls apart at the age of 33 just like his dad and we’re stuck with his contract.

  8. gs01 5 years ago

    It’s crazy some people get exited about winning 5 years from now, how can people be so patient and accept losing for that long. I want them to win now, I’m tired of watching the Jays lose.

    • Lunchbox45 5 years ago

      they won 85 games last year champ

      • bigb69 5 years ago

        Won 85 games and 4th place in the division

        • $5427573 5 years ago

          Won 85 games last year with a team that has a future in 2-3 years versus won 85 games with a bunch of guys that are about to leave town or about to get ‘over the hill’ is also a big part of it.

    • RAWagman 5 years ago

      They actually have been winning more than they lose already. Just not enough to remain in the hunt beyond August 15 or so.

    • $5427573 5 years ago

      It’s that attitude of Torontonians why our team hasn’t been to any championships for years. That ‘we must win now’ at the expense of our future is what put us perennially out of contention.
      We AT LEAST have to try this new AA method of fully committing to a rebuild and see what happens before we bash it.

      • See Toronto Maple Leafs.
        also… Phil Kessel

        • RedSoxDynasty 5 years ago

          Ahhh Phil Kessel for Tyler Seguin and another top 5 pick this year! The Bruins say thank you!

        • Sniderlover 5 years ago

          You’d be surprised at some of Leafs fan thinking that the deal is good because Kessel is more “proven”… lol.

          Toronto has had bunch of useless tools as GM and Burke is definitely one of them. Raptors and Leafs pretty much refuse to re-build properly and invest in scouting which is why they have been a failure for the past few years. Raptors have just been a fail, period though I can understand them because their star players have often wanted out pretty quick.

    • Coollet 5 years ago

      When you use to losing like torontonians are, 5 years isn’t that far away. patience is a vertue.

  9. MadmanTX 5 years ago

    That is one weird quote from Beeston. Sounds like he expects to win World Series on hopes and dreams if not competitiveness.

    • Lunchbox45 5 years ago

      not really at all..
      he said he doesn’t want to make the team a 90 win team

      he wants to make it a 95 win team for years to come

    • grownice 5 years ago

      pretty sure u know what he was getting at lol…

  10. The_Silver_Stacker 5 years ago

    You have to admire the Jay’s outlook and direction. Probably won’t make the playoffs this year, but should put up a good fight and certainly going to be even more a threat in In a few years, especially with the young pitching they have assembled. AA is very bold and savy, got to give him props for unloading Rios and Wells’ contracts.

    • Lunchbox45 5 years ago

      believe it or not..JPR unloaded Rios..

      • The_Silver_Stacker 5 years ago

        Oops, sorry for that mistake.

      • grownice 5 years ago

        for nothing lol shoulda waited till aa got there, could have at least got a damn player back.

        • Encarnacion's Parrot 5 years ago

          I think that Rios for Lincecum trade proposal would have been more likely to have gone through if Ricciardi kept his mouth shut. Oh wells.

          • As much as I like Aaron Hill. If he was in that deal with Rios, it would have happened undoubtably. Pretty sure I would take Lincecum at this point. Being one of the top 3 pitchers in baseball.

          • Sniderlover 5 years ago

            At the time, Rios was a rising star so I can see why JP was hesitant not to do that deal especially considering Lincecum mechanics, size and you have to wonder how long he can keep going before he breaks down (if he even does).

  11. People will never flock back to the Rogers Centre. It’s a mediocre place to see a game. It’s a mediocre entertainment experience….the city has grown up in the past 20 years. There are too many other choices and too many other options for the entertainment dollar. The location, comfort and convenience of Rogers Centre is the biggest challenge. A new stadium in the near suburbs with easy access is the only thing that will ever bring crowds of 30,000 plus on a regular basis again. Winning isn’t enough.

    • WarvsBA 5 years ago

      not true at all.

    • Clearly you never went to a game in the early 90’s. That place was CHARGED. Blue Jays baseball was amazing and the fans we’re insane about it. I’ve been to Yankee Stadium and Fenway, but I have never heard a louder stadium than the Dome in 93.

      • You’re right, but that was 20 years ago. There is an entire generation of potential fans that have never seen anything approaching that level of excitement. The team was winning and exciting, no question. But the stadium was also a novelty then. I’ve been to a dozen MLB ballparks in the past decade and our experience NOW isn’t even close. I attended many games before, during and since the glory days, and only gave up my partial season tickets three years ago. It wasn’t about supporting a perennially “rebuilding” team, it was the value for my dollar and my time just wasn’t there. I love what the team is doing now, and genuinely hope I’m wrong. When they start really winning, we’ll see….

        • Lunchbox45 5 years ago

          The issue is the experience is lame because no one goes..

          As a fan who goes to about 20 games a year, I know what you feel, when theres barely 10,000 people there, people are afraid to cheer and get loud. It is lame I agree..

          But there have been a few games over the last 2 years that show there is hope and that the casual fans are willing to come back when its worth it …

          Ie the Doc vs Burnette game 2 years ago, over 40,000, one of the loudest games I’ve ever been too..

          Last years farewell to cito, the place was absolutely packed.. People will come back when the team get in to a wild card chase, down the stretch. People still care about this team

        • Roland Jodoin 5 years ago

          Why do you want a stadium in the “near suburbs”? So you can go straight home after a game instead of enjoying downtown restaurants, entertainment, etc before and after the game? Beats me.

          As a fan who enjoyed the late 1970s Expos in the crappiest and coldest MLB stadium there was, I can tell you one thing: it’s not winning as much as the anticipation of winning that puts excitement into a stadium. And the anticipation of winning comes from being familiar and identifying with a group of young players with high potential.

        • mike292929 5 years ago

          The Rogers Center is a fine place to WATCH a game, and that’s it. Outside of actually watching the game, there is very little to do, especially for someone who has to bring kids. I went to a Mariners game in Seattle last year and I was amazed at the activities they had to offer youth. Rogers Center couldn’t touch what they had. Also, IMO the days of expensive hotdogs and nachos is over. They need to bring in something that distinguishes what Canada is such as things like Poutine and Beaver Tails. Doesn’t have to be those things, but you get the picture. Suggesting however that they need a new stadium is absurd. I find it great watching a game there.

    • Mick_In_Ithaca 5 years ago

      They had 29,000 plus a couple of years ago. “The city has grown up in the past 20 years.” Really? So what was it in 1991? Some little backwater with the Blue Jays and nothing else? No other choices and options for the entertainment dollar? They put close to 4M fans in that place in 91-93, and guess what: there were plenty of other things to do.

      The Rogers center isn’t the greatest place on earth to see a ball game, but it’s not horrible. The worst thing about it is the idiotic MC and crowd interaction crap they do, which is a fairly recent development. What I often wonder is: why doesn’t Rogers, having gotten the place for a song, put a real grass field in there? Yeah, they’d lose out on revenues from other types of events, but it’d be easier on players. And yes, they can grow grass in a dome.

      • THey dont put grass because it’s not possible in the dome. When the dome was built, there was no drainage system built to allow for a grass field. The associate with this is astronomical. In the 40-50 million dollar range to get the infastructure to preform such a task. The only way to get a grass stadium is for a new one to be built.

        • Mick_In_Ithaca 5 years ago

          This objection has been made many times. What I fail to see is why 40-50 million to get the necessary infrastructure in place is prohibitive, whereas the vastly larger cost of constructing a new stadium is not. Rogers isn’t going to consider that anyway, since they got Skydome for basically nothing. They could afford the renovation, and it would go a long way in preserving the health of players, and attracting free agents who would otherwise decline to play on an artificial surface.

          But you’re probably right. It isn’t likely to happen. But a new stadium isn’t likely to happen either.

    • popular_mechanics_for_pitchers 5 years ago

      How do you know? Jays haven’t been to the playoffs since then. If the team is sustainable and winning 95 -100 games a year I don’t see why the ol’ dome can’t draw 40-45000 people a night. You also have to consider if the payroll is that high in a couple years they are retaining their stars and hopefully bringing in more stars that I would go pay and see

    • BlueJaysFTW 5 years ago

      No. Roger’s Center is fine place to watch a baseball game. Probably not as multi-faceted or entertaining as places like Yankee Stadium, but it’s fine. I hate people who say that we need a new stadium, they’re acting like a kid who gets tired of a new toy. Roger’s Center is only 20 years old people.

    • sadp 5 years ago

      “A new stadium in the near suburbs with easy access is the only thing”

      Preposterous. A stadium in the suburbs of Toronto would be a terrible idea. No transit access, or access for anyone who doesn’t have a car for that matter. The dome is ideally situated for people from the outer parts of the GTA due to its proximity to Union Station, and easy to get to for anyone who lives in the main area of town via TTC, foot or bicycle. Anyone who drives there knows there’s tons of parking around there already too. Plus being right on the harbour, downtown, is a much nicer setting than some sterile, monolithic slab of pavement in the middle of a bunch of box stores.

    • Clearly you’ve never been to the SkyDome (now known as the Rogers Centre) to see a game. I love going to the dome knowing that no matter what the weather, the game will go on. When I was seven, I used to sit on the cold, unforgiving steel benches of Old Exhibition Stadium when I watched my Jays in April, which is technically still winter in Canada. Today I’m glad to say my son doesn’t have to take that kind of abuse from mother nature to catch a game and I love it! When the SkyDome first opened, it was a marvel, and today it’s still one of the most reliable stadiums in all of MLB. I like going to the RC to catch a game and I look forward to taking my boy to see a few this season!

  12. slider32 5 years ago

    The draft really benefits the poor teams the most, the Jays biggest problem is their poor attendence. I don’t see the Jays being a factor in the East for at least 5 years. They won’t be able to out bid the Yanks and Sox for top free agents; and they won’t get the best draft picks. The only way for them to become a contender is by trades and with so many average players on the roster that will be hard. I could see them out bidding teams for a player like Fielder since the Sox and Yanks won’t be bidding on him.

    • BlueJaysFTW 5 years ago

      Wrong on so many fronts.

    • JayTeam 5 years ago

      You may be right about top FA’s, but the draft really isn’t that expensive, as long as you believe in it and trust your scouts. Jays were 3rd last year on Rule 4 signings(just over 10 mill), spent 10 on Hech and another 4 mill on int FA’s. AA and the Jays understand this is the way to go to get a sustainable, steady pipeline of cheap talent. which is why they made and continue to make moves to keep high draft picks coming.

  13. jakec77 5 years ago

    The Rays are going to be screwed in a couple of years. They are going to be a low payroll team potentiall in a division with 4 of the top payrolls (Baltimore can do it, if they ever start winning again- it’s a great baseball town with a great park, it took a period of epic ineptness to get where they are now).

  14. I love it how the Jays have all this money now that they got rid of Vernon Wells’s contract, and yet the Angels could not get any compensation money out of the Wells trade. I would have asked for atleast $10 mil.

  15. baseballz 5 years ago

    Here’s hoping AA spends 15-20 mill on the draft ! If we can get someone to fall to us that would probably be the best of all possible scenarios stemming from getting rid of Wells.

  16. I think he was talking in Canadian dollars.

  17. Canadian and American dolllar is at par.

  18. johnsmith4 5 years ago

    I never hear fans from New York & Boston complain about Skydome (errr Rogers Centre) when Yankees & Red Sox are in town. In fact, they rave about how affordable it is to see a baseball game.

    • $5427573 5 years ago

      I think it’s the bang for the buck Jays fans are looking for. I think ticket prices/concessions/parking are fair enough but the overall atmosphere is garbage. There have been a few outlier games that have been great, but only because the fans made it that way. It would be nice to see more effort put into the fanfare.

      Not to sound too chauvinistic or anything but take the ‘dance pack’ for example. They’re supposed to get the crowd going from time to time, but I swear their average age looks to be around 12-13. Personally it feels more awkward than entertaining when they try and get the crowd going.

      • Roland Jodoin 5 years ago

        One thing that’s beyond me is that although Rush’s Geddy Lee is one of the best known baseball fans in town, the Jays haven’t approached him to ask if they could use some of his bass licks to enliven the game when foul balls go into the crowd etc, instead of the nondescript sounds we currently hear.

        I mentioned the late 1970s Montreal experience in an earlier post. Despite the very low-tech times, one thing that was neat at the Big O was how they used the electronic board and the PA system to draw the crowd’s attention to the game. For instance, every time the opposing pitcher tried to cut off a runner at first, a “chicken” picture would be posted and a “chicken” sound would be heard. Sounds corny but it really worked. Now at the SD/RC we are bombarded with ads and complicated stats, but nothing directly relevant to what is taking place on the field.

        • $5427573 5 years ago

          Exactly, those ‘little’ things seem like almost nothing at the time, but when they are almost completely gone it can be a real downer on the whole experience of a MLB game.

  19. Encarnacion's Parrot 5 years ago

    @Roland Jodoin

    Doesn’t Geddy Lee sit behind home plate? I’ve never seen him on tv.. besides, I’d rather hear him belt The Camera Eye than slap a bass line.

  20. $1545094 5 years ago

    the Jays will have all this money to spend, but I don’t think they should go spending a large amount of money on one or more free agents.
    who is potential arguably big free agents after 2011?
    Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder, Jose Reyes, Jimmy Rollins, Carlos Beltran, Grady Sizemore($8.5 MIL club option), David Ortiz, Chris Carpenter($15 MIL club option), Roy Oswalt($16 MIL mutual option), Sabathia(may opt out), Wainwright($10 MIL vesting option). those names stand out to me.
    based on who could be available and including the options, not much that over whelming.
    I expect Pujols to get signed by St.Louis. even if he wasn’t, Pujols as good as he is is someone I would not want to spend the money it would take to sign him.
    the only one who might realistically be worth spending money on is Fielder.

    maybe the Jays best option to bring in quality players is through trading, and based on AA ability to make good trades that’s a good option.

  21. Lunchbox45 5 years ago

    The Rays have like 10% of the first 100 picks in this years draft. I doubt anything is going to dry up soon

  22. jb226 5 years ago

    So they will have to be more aggressive in terms of trading their players who panned out but are starting to get expensive, like they did with Garza and offering arbitration to players likely to walk.

    In fact, that’s probably the more reliable way to re-stock a farm system anyway. There are a lot of really good top 10 picks, but a lot of really bad busts as well. When you’re making a trade, you have a chance to pick up some prospects who have had a few years in professional baseball and you’re able to make more realistic projections of where they are and where they could be. It’s the same thought process of why college players tend to be more sure picks than high school players.

  23. NexttoIgnore 5 years ago

    This is the year Rays should be piling on FA’s… whereas on a limited budget, their ‘push-over-the-top’ years is to look internally. Beeston’s point is: unlike the Rays of today, when the Jays get there, it can add thru FA and spend big. Then again, from a Yankee perspective, 140 Mil that was sooo 2003.

  24. ClimaClub 5 years ago

    the argument is that they dont have top picks anymore, the first pick they have this season is mid 20’s. the core of thier team is built around players picked in the top 5. price, longoria, upton, niemann, (delmon young who they traded for garza/bartlett)

  25. BlueJaysFTW 5 years ago

    Cuz prospects always turn into MLB ready talent.

  26. Lunchbox45 5 years ago

    So the tampa bay farm system will dry up because of a lack of top 5 picks…

    but you get super excited about the jays farm system, despite not having any top 5 picks?

    Mlb draft is a crap shoot, the more picks you get, especially early on, the more likely you are to come away with some good pieces.. The number one prospect in baseball right now was picked in the late 1st round. Rays have a terrific scouting department

  27. And the number one player in baseball right now was picked in the 13th round, to drive your point home. Early picks just increase your odds.

    In response to Dclub specifically about the Rays success with early picks, see Hellickson (4th round), Jaso (12th), Jennings (10th), Davis (3rd) among others.

  28. $5427573 5 years ago

    You’ve got to remember the 2010 season started where everyone was thinking Toronto was going to be a far below .500 team. No one knew Bautista was going to rock the house and no one knew even what our pitching was going to be like. I would pay more attention to the attendance this year than last.

    And i’ve got to be honest, getting to a Jays game can be quite ridiculous for anyone outside of the GTA to get to a weekday game. Not that I want a new stadium (though something like Target field would be amazing), but just recognizing the disadvantages of an out of towner who can’t take the TTC.

  29. Roland Jodoin 5 years ago

    Did you ever try parking near the York Mills station (Yonge & 401) and taking the subway down?

  30. mike292929 5 years ago

    I agree… coming from Burlington, it either costs me $50 to take the GO for my family, or $20 to park plus gas. Not including the price of all the tickets. As much as I love going, it costs me $100 to see a game.

    On the other hand, it might be cheaper to divorce, and pay child support. This way It will cost me a whopping $25 and the countless memories of women telling me to get away from them. Oh to dream.

  31. $5427573 5 years ago

    I didn’t know of that possibility (not from Toronto), but i’ll definitely check it out. Hopefully it saves on time compared to the retarded traffic going down the 427 and gardner during rush hour. I swear, where i’m from on a normal day it takes 1 hr to get to the stadium, but on game days, it’s more like 2.5 hrs.

  32. Roland Jodoin 5 years ago

    Don’t forget that all weeknight games start at the worst time possible for traffic (inbound or outbound). If coming from outside Toronto for a weeknight game I would seriously consider taking a half day off and enjoy the afternoon at a pub rather than at the wheel! Or you might want to park even further out near a GO train station (possibly for free) and take the GO train directly to Union Station.

  33. The Nats offered Texeria over $200Mil when it was FA. I shudder at the idea of what kind of cash they’d be willing to offer Fielder or Pujols.

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