Tonight the New York Mets and Chicago Cubs play the first game of the National League Championship Series—the semifinals of Major League Baseball’s championship tournament.
A quick comparison of the two teams’ playoff roster payrolls shows just how lopsided salaries in professional sports can be (even irrespective of endorsement deals). The top paid players on both teams each make more than the combined total of more than half of the players eligible to take the field tonight. In fact half of the money paid to tonight’s 50 available players goes to just 7 people.
To be sure, every player tonight is getting paid at a rate higher than most Americans earn in a day. The average salary of an MLB player this season was more than $4 million and the league’s minimum salary more than $500,000 for the full season.
A request to the Mets to clarify Matt Reynolds’ salary was not returned by press time. He played in the minor leagues this year and was called up to play in the playoffs after his AAA season ended.