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As OutKick’s Mike Gunzelman astutely pointed out recently, Ken Griffey Jr. is one of the highest-paid players on the Cincinnati Reds payroll. The highest-paid player, Joey Votto, is starting the season on the injured list.
The Reds released their second-highest-paid player, Mike Moustakas, in January. However, the team still owes Moustakas $22 million this season, according to Spotrac.
Of course, Ken Griffey, Jr. is 53 years old and has not played a game for the Cincinnati Reds in 15 years. He checks in as the fourth-highest when accounting for Moustakas.
When the Cincinnati Reds take the field for Opening Day on Thursday against the Pittsburgh Pirates, over $50 million in payroll will not. That number comprises the current salaries for Votto, Moustakas and Griffey, Jr.
The highest-paid player who will actually take the field is Wil Myers. Myers signed a one-year, $6 million deal this offseason.
The Opening Day roster of 25 players will cost approximately $30 million in salary.
There are 17 MLB players who make about as much, or more, as the entire Cincinnati Reds Opening Day roster.
But why should the Cincinnati Reds spend any money? As owner Phil Castellini infamously said last season, “where are you gonna go?”
Well, Phil, as a Reds fan I can tell you where I’m not going to go. I’m not going to go to Great American Ballpark. Am I going to switch to another MLB team? No, I am not.
But I’m not spending a dime of money on this team until there’s some return on investment.
There’s a reason that #SellTheTeamBob trends on Twitter during Reds’ games. Fans are tired of owners Bob and Phil Castellini.
Bob proudly stated, on the day he bought the team in 2006, he would “bring championship baseball back to Cincinnati.” The Reds have not won a playoff series since 1995.
Sell the team, Bob.
Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @RealDanZak