Coming off their first NLCS appearance in 29 years, the Brewers are looking at the first nine-figure payroll in franchise history heading into 2012. Tom Haudricourt of The Journal Sentinel spoke to GM Doug Melvin, who confirmed that the team will outspend its projected budget next year.
“We’re way over what we projected our budget to be at this point,” said Melvin. “It’s over $100 million. We hoped to be in the low 90s.”
There's no indication that the Brewers will need to move some players to shed payroll, and Haudricourt notes that the $100MM+ figure includes players who under team control but remain unsigned. That includes the arbitration-eligible Shaun Marcum and Jose Veras, who filed for $8.7MM and $2.375MM earlier this week, respectively. The team countered with $6.75MM and $2MM.
Melvin also said it's unlikely the Brewers would be able to re-sign Prince Fielder even if the slugger was willing to take a one-year deal. Milwaukee agreed to sign Norichika Aoki for two years and $2.25MM yesterday, but their biggest additions came earlier this offseason: Aramis Ramirez (three years, $36MM) and Alex Gonzalez (one-year, $4.25MM).