For the Love of Money

The ALCS and NLCS are in full swing and while the 2007 MLB season is not technically over, the Faithful are already looking toward 2008. The amount of money Jim Hendry will have to work with for next season has not been announced or even speculated about in the mainstream media. With the ownership of the club still up in the air, some are beginning to think Hendry will have little money to spend this off-season after maxing-out the credit card last year.

The Cubs definitely have less holes to fill this year but still must find ways to upgrade several positions this winter. With Lou Piniella in place, he and Hendry should be able to add the players Piniella wants in Mesa next February. Here is a look at the Cubs’ current payroll and contract status of the 40-man roster for 2008.

Pitchers

  • Carlos Zambrano – $15 million
  • Ted Lilly – $7 million
  • Jason Marquis – $6.375 million
  • Steve Trachsel – $4.75 million (Club Option)
  • Ryan Dempster – $5.5 million (eligible for free agency after 2008)
  • Bobby Howry – $4 million (eligible for free agency after 2008)
  • Scott Eyre – $3.8 million (Player Option)
  • Will Ohman – $1.6 million

Total Under Contract (with Scott Eyre) – $43.275 million

Infield

  • Derrek Lee – $13 million
  • Aramis Ramirez – $14 million
  • Mark DeRosa – $4.75 million
  • Daryle Ward – $1.2 million Club Option with a $50,000 buyout

Total Under Contract (with Daryle Ward) – $32.95 million

Outfield

  • Alfonso Soriano – $13 million
  • Jacque Jones – $5 million
  • Cliff Floyd – Mutual Option for 2008

Total Under Contract – $18 million

Catchers

  • Henry Blanco – $2.8 million ($3 million club option for 2009 with a $300,000 buyout)

Arbitration Eligible

  • Neal Cotts
  • Mark Prior (free agent after 2008 season)
  • Michael Wuertz
  • Craig Monroe

0-3 Men

Pitchers

  • Rich Hill
  • Juan Mateo
  • Ed Campusano
  • Sean Gallagher
  • Kevin Hart
  • Carlos Marmol
  • Sean Marshall
  • Billy Petrick
  • Carmen Pignatiello

Infield

  • Ronny Cedeno
  • Ryan Theriot
  • Mike Fontenot

Outfield

  • Matt Murton
  • Sam Fuld
  • Angel Pagan
  • Eric Patterson
  • Felix Pie

Catchers

  • Jake Fox
  • Geovany Soto

Free Agents

  • Kerry Wood
  • Jason Kendall

**Note, Angel Guzman had Tommy John surgery in September and will miss the entire 2008 season.

The total of the 2008 payroll without arbitration eligible players or the automatic renewal contracts is $97.025 million (14 players). This number does not include any incentives or Lou Piniella’s salary (around $3 million) but does include Daryle Ward and Scott Eyre.

Jim Hendry must decide what Cliff Floyd’s future with the club is as well as Steve Trachsel. Ken Rosenthal reported last week the Cubs are expected to pickup the option on Trachsel and if they do the Cubs payroll will exceed $100 million without making a single move this off-season.

Jim Hendry has been applauded in the past for making very good trades. Hendry will likely have to work his magic again this off-season. The CCO will run a list of probable free agents later in the week.

Quote of the Day

"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow." - Albert Einstein
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