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What is the Astros Payroll Situation NOW?

Updated: Nov 10, 2022

How the Astros manage payroll while bringing back key players and what room does it leave for addressing one or two challenge spots.


I believe in providing you actual data so here is MY table for what the Astros 2023 payroll situation is.


As described in the "These Astros became Free Agents – 11/6- Who do we think will be back" there are a few key decisions the Astros face with players that HAVE or COULD be Free agents. Of the players listed in that article here is who I think WILL be back.

  1. Brantley

  2. Verlander

  3. Gurriel

I believe in providing my data so you can see how my numbers, especially in this space are calculated. MANY if not most will fail to add the $10+M for non arb players in this calculation. They will forget the 40-man players in the minors number (~$2.5M). They will punt on the estimated benefits to be paid which includes an estimate for the bonuses. THIS is WHY my numbers are consistently higher than others will push to you. It is also why my numbers will be consistently closer to reality. These factors are likely too high by 5 to 10% which means I have around a $2MM buffer in my numbers. I am more than OK with that.


As of right now, the Astros have a CBT number of ~$169MM.

This is based on Verlander (player opting out) and Mancini (team declining) and Smith (team declining) ALL not coming back. For now, all of the Arb players are assumed to be tendered.


NOW, let's execute what we recommended in the previous FA article.

  1. Verlander 1 year, $40M, player option ($40M) for 2024

  2. Brantley, 1 year $10M, CLUB option for 2024

  3. Gurriel 1 year $6M, CLUB option for 2024

  4. Decline mutual option with Mancini, $250,000 buyout

  5. Decline option for Will Smith, $1M buyout

  6. Non-tender Phil Maton

  7. Non-tender Blake Taylor

Do all of that and this team is at ~$222M vs. CBT of $233M. Read about the CBT here. Yes they would have $11M to stay under the CBT. I THINK if they agree to the Verlander deal the assumption is that they WON'T be under the CBT1. I think the goal would be to be under the CBT2 of $253M.


We will add more here later about CBT1, CBT2, and etc.


Next Stop on our offseason journey as outlined by the offseason outline

  • What is the qualifying offer and will that Astros make any and how it might impact who they pursue as free agents

  • What are the biggest team needs that can be resolved in free agency?

Data here is from the Fangraphs.com Roster Resource pages. We will confirm with the other sites in the days to come.


For those of accessing the site via mobile device, you may have a better experience now and also on the "Spaces by Wix" app. Let me know if this helps!


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I will push out a video in tonight on this on the YouTube

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Numbers make sense. I suspect you have the Verlander deal about right, but might a 3-year contract at a lower AAV make sense to spread out the cap space risk a bit? He seems pretty intent on playing that long, and Crane doesn't seem willing to see him play in another uniform.


Would love to bring Brantley back, but Pena's success plus the team winning without him (with all due respect to his speech after Game 3--and I mean it, what a leader) makes me wonder if they'll look to give a few of the guys in the minors a shot. Meyers had a rough year coming off injury, but looked promising last year and performed in AAA. Dirden was…


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