Cashman calls payroll too high and strives for action

Updated: February 16, 2008, 8:44 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

The New York Yankees had a record payroll of $218.3 million in 2007. It's not going down this season, although GM Brian Cashman says he would like to rein it in.

"We are high," Yankees GM Brain Cashman said in an interview with ESPN 1050 New York's Andrew Marchand. "If I could get our payroll lower [I would]. It is not going to happen -- not this year. But we have, at the end of the year, a lot of numbers coming off. The combination of building our farm stystem and getting our salary lines back to where they probably need to be. That's a process, too, and that takes some time. I'm not particularly proud that we have the highest payroll in the game.

"I just don't think you are going to get the type of bang for your buck at the type of dollars that you are paying."

New York is on track to lead the majors in payroll again but its total appears likely to drop. The Yankees have committed more than $200 million to the players on their 40-man roster.

Cashman knows his job will depend on how much bang he gets out of those bucks.

"I don't think anyone is promised tomorrow," Cashman said. "It is something I don't really think about it. All I really care about, every day that I have had this job, is doing the best job I can while I've got it because I've had the fortunate side of having the rare opportunity of being one of 30 GMs in the game. While I do it, I'm going to do everything in my power to do the right way."

The Yankees' record payroll of $218.3 million in 2007 gave it baseball's highest payroll for the ninth straight year.

The World Series champion Boston Red Sox were a distant second at $155.4 million, according to information received by clubs from the commissioner's office. The Los Angeles Dodgers were third at $125.6 million, followed by the New York Mets ($120.9 million), Chicago Cubs ($115.9 million), Seattle ($114.4 million), Los Angeles Angels ($111 million), Philadelphia ($101.8 million), San Francisco ($101.5 million) and the Chicago White Sox ($100.2 million).

At the back end were Tampa Bay ($31.8 million), Florida ($33.1 million), Washington ($43.3 million) and Pittsburgh ($51.4 million).

Information from The Associated Press and 1050 ESPN New York's Andrew Marchand was used in this report.