The best team money can buy will watch the World Series on television with the rest of Los Angeles’ baseball fans, as they fell to the St. Louis Cardinals, a franchise that pays its players exactly $100 M less than the Dodgers, four games to two in the NLCS.
Technically speaking, the Dodgers are actually NOT the best team money can buy, as the new york yankees still, actually, have a slightly higher payroll, paying their third place team $228,995,945 for the 2013 season, while the guys occupying Dodgers’ uniforms have to make due with a paltry $216,301,909. Somehow, the paupers from St. Louis were able to become National League champs while struggling by on only a MLB’s 11th best $116,702,085. They did get through the season, NLDS and NLCS with one major
grown products, with only a couple of high-priced free agent additions, in Matt Holiday and Carlos Beltran. Their dominant young pitching staff almost without exception came up through their system, from staff ace Adam Wainwright to young starters Joe Kelly and Shelby Miller, bullpen studs Trevor Rosenthal and Carlos Martinez, and the next great star among NL pitchers and tonight’s winner, Michael Wacha, whose rights were obtained with the amateur draft pick the team received from the Angels when they signed away Albert Pujols.
This off season and into the foreseeable future, Guggenheim Baseball Management will more than likely spend more and more, bringing to the Dodgers more refugees from other organizations, some good, some not so good, but likely all overpriced. Meanwhile, St. Louis will continue to develop young talent through a superior farm system.
People will say “But what about all those injuries the Dodgers struggled through? How would they have done with the team at full strength?” Well, a close look at the Cardinals reveals that not only have they gone through the playoffs without perhaps their best hitter, Allen Craig, and regular shortstop
Rafael Furcal, but through the playoffs and much of the season, and in some cases all of the season, without what amounts to a an all-star pitching staff: Chris Carpenter, Jake Westbrook, Jamie Garcia, Fernando Salas, and Jason Motte.
And, while the Dodgers are stuck for at least one more season with the empty uniform non manager Don Mattingly, the Cardinals are managed by Mike Matheny who was last season’s NL Manager of the Year in his freshman year as a major league manager. He hasn’t had too bad of a sophomore season, either.