We're Going to Talk About Payroll Because There's Nothing Else to Talk About and I'm Sorry




We've now reached the point where we've hung our new calendars (Jesse: the Gallagher Brothers Looking Surly Page-a-Day; Jon: The Ladies of Niche Sports; Me: iCarly; Rest of the Staff: the FanGraphs 2012 Best of Calculators and Spreadsheets), which means pitchers and catchers aren't that far away, but there's still ABSOLUTELY NOTHING GOING ON. Which is why we're arguing about the Twins payroll again, because awesome!

Phil Mackey wrote a convincing defense of the club's decision to reduce the payroll from it's 2011 high of $113 million back to around $100 million, with the reasoning that if Morneau and Mauer aren't healthy, that extra $13-$15 million isn't going to bring in enough talent to make much of a difference. He also compared the Twins relatively paltry TV income to that of the Los Angeles Angels of San Berdoo or Inland Empire or Wherever as a reason they simply aren't going to be competing for Albert Pujols or C.J. Wilson (or Prince Fielder).

The thing is...the income isn't that paltry. The team's new deal with FSN will bring in $29 million annually. Compared to the $150 million pile of lucre that the LAAoSBoIEoW will rake in, it's not a lot, but as noted by pot roast enthusiast Ben Collin, this is $27.5 million MORE per year than they were getting under their previous deal.

The angel on my shoulder tells me that they're just making sure the two MVPs are healthy, and if the team is competitive through June, they will take the money they've banked and use it to improve the team for a pennant run in August and September. The devil on my shoulder, which looks suspiciously like John Bonnes' Twitter account, asks how likely it is that this team will actually do that, and if the team is unwilling to invest money in the team, what message is that sending to the fans?

And then I just get depressed and think I should have just written something funny about Kevin Slowey abandoning R.A. Dickey on Mount Kilimanjaro because Jeff Mangum was doing a solo tour.

As always, your thoughts are welcome in the comments.

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