Thursday September 28, 2023

Which MLB Teams Were the Biggest Spenders of $3.7B Offseason?

  • MLB teams gave out $3.7 billion in guarantees this offseason.
  • The New York teams led the way, but they weren't alone.
San Diego Padres right fielder Juan Soto (22) hits a single to New York Mets relief pitcher Seth Lugo (67)
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The “Cohen tax” apparently cannot slow down Steve Cohen’s New York Mets.

Cohen, who bought the Mets for $2.4 billion in 2020, has taken his spending on the team to unprecedented heights — despite an added luxury tax threshold in the latest collective bargaining agreement unofficially named for the well-heeled hedge-fund trader. 

The tax requires him to pay 90 cents for every dollar above $293 million in payroll — which means the Mets are on the hook for an estimated $375.5 million against the luxury tax in 2023 and around $111 million in luxury tax payments.

Cohen filled out the starting rotation with Justin Verlander ($86.7 million over two years plus an option), Kodai Senga ($75 million, five years), and Jose Quintana ($26 million, two years) and re-signed Brandon Nimmo ($162 million, eight years), Edwin Diaz ($102 million, five years), and Adam Ottavino ($14.5 million, two years), among others.

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The Amazins weren’t alone in cutting big checks: A strong free-agent class and changes to the collective bargaining agreement drove lavish spending across the league.

The neighboring New York Yankees kept Aaron Judge in the Bronx for nine years at $360 million and inked ace Carlos Rodon for $162 million over six years.

The Philadelphia Phillies signed Trea Turner ($300 million, 11 years) and Taijuan Walker ($72 million, four years). The San Diego Padres brought in Xander Bogaerts ($280 million, 11 years), and a handful of supporting cast.

MLB teams gave out a collective $3.7 billion in guarantees to 140 free agents. Starting today, we’ll find out who got their money’s worth.

Offseason Spending

TeamFree Agents SignedSpending
New York Yankees5$574,500,000
New York Mets9$423,166,666
Philadelphia Phillies5$399,000,000
San Diego Padres8$380,000,000
Chicago Cubs10$310,520,000
Texas Rangers5$247,500,000
Minnesota Twins4$243,000,000
San Francisco Giants6$174,000,000
Houston Astros3$105,000,000
Chicago White Sox3$90,000,000
Toronto Blue Jays4$89,800,000
St. Louis Cardinals2$87,500,000
Boston Red Sox7$87,050,000
Los Angeles Angels5$78,250,000
Los Angeles Dodgers7$53,300,000
Tampa Bay Rays1$40,000,000
Cleveland Guardians2$39,000,000
Oakland A’s6$37,000,000
Kansas City Royals5$34,150,000
Pittsburgh Pirates6$30,375,000
Miami Marlins2$25,500,000
Arizona Diamondbacks5$25,000,000
Washington Nationals6$23,250,000
Baltimore Orioles3$23,000,000
Detroit Tigers2$18,500,000
Colorado Rockies4$18,250,000
Cincinnati Reds $13,925,000
Seattle Mariners3$8,920,000
Milwaukee Brewers5$7.500,000
Atlanta Braves3$3,015,000
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