Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Gutter: Cheapskate update - 4/29

A weekend sidetrack created a five-day lull in updating the Cheapskate standings. Thank God I’m the only person who is actually interested in this wholly irrelevant system of ranking Major League Baseball teams.

Anyway, I still do find it interesting, so I’m going to continue updating the Cheapskate standings.

Just to refresh, here are the numbers.

Total salaries (according to this list published by the Associated Press):

Pittsburgh $49,365,283
Oakland $47,967,126
Tampa Bay $43,820,598
Florida $21,836,500

Cost per game:

Pittsburgh $304,723.97
Oakland $296,093.37
Tamp Bay $270,497.52
Florida $134,793.21

There have been some surprising happenings in the competition for best value-based mediocrity (or mediocrity-based value, depending on your perspective). Most notable is the Tampa Bay ball club, which has now won six in a row, including a 4-0 stretch over the past five days. And while the winning streak hasn’t been enough to push the Rays out of third place in the Cheapskate standings, they have drawn within $13,000 of the second-place Athletics; perhaps more importantly (although not to me), is that the Rays’ six-game winning streak has brought them into a tie for first place in the AL East.

At the same time, Oakland has gone 4-1 over the past five days to hold onto first place in the AL West and second place in the Cheapskate rankings. But it’s not enough to get over the Marlins, whose 2-2 record over the past five has been enough to stick them in first place in the NL East and the Cheapskates. Florida’s low total salary is going to require a complete collapse if Oakland or Tampa Bay hope to take over the top spot in the Cheapskates.

Oh yeah, the Pirates are in this thing, too. Dropping Matt Morris was a nice PR move, but they still owe him the 10 mill for this year, so it’s not going to help their Cheapskate ranking. Ditto for the 1-3 record over the weekend: that kind of winning percentage is not going to improve any standings, be they in the NL Central or the Cheapskates.

Record: 15-10
Standing: 1st in NL East
Games back: 0
Money spent per win: $224,655.35

Record: 17-10
Standing: 1st in AL West
Games back: 0
Money spent per win: $470,265.94

Record: 14-11
Standing: T-1st in AL East
Games back: 0
Money spent per win: $483,031.29

Record: 10-15
Standing: 6th in NL Central
Games back: 6
Money spent per win: $761,809.93

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