Bob Dutton, in-between sighing at the constant barrage of ridiculous questions he gets, got this interesting question.
@Royals_Report is it true if you don't use it you'll lose it?— Ben Hess (@BGHess11) July 21, 2013
Is that a serious question? Oh wait, it was this question.
@Royals_Report Between Santana, Frenchy and, presumably, Chen, #Royals have a lot coming off the books. Any word on 2014 budget?— Matt Franker (@MattFranker) July 22, 2013
Dutton answered in today's column:
The new national television packages kick in next year, so all clubs should have more money available for payroll. I’d be surprised if the Royals, currently around $81 million, don’t maintain or increase their spending.
Before you get too excited, remember Jeremy Guthrie gets a massive raise (from $5 million to $11 million) along with raises for many other player under contract. The Royals have contract obligations totaling $53 million next year, assuming they pick up James Shields' club option. They also have arbitration cases with pretty much everyone in the bullpen (Greg Holland, Aaron Crow, Tim Collins, Luke Hochevar!) as well as Eric Hosmer (thanks for calling him up in May, Dayton!) A rough estimate of those players (minus Hochevar right? They wouldn't be stupid enough to bring him back, right? RIGHT?) would add about $10-13 million to that. Decisions would have to be made on Felipe Paulino, George Kottaras, and Luis Mendoza (and Chris Getz, but again, not stupid, RIGHT?) as well.
So even if they maintain spending levels, that's probably about $10 million to deal with. It is exciting to think about how Dayton will spend that money.