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2014 NPB Payrolls

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2014 NPB Payrolls

by Patrick Newman (Feb 25, 2014)

Alright, here we go, it’s time for the always popular post on Japanese team payrolls.

This data comes from the February 3, 2014 edition of Shukan Baseball via their handy iOS appSasuga, Shu-be.

These payroll figures are a little different from MLB numbers in that each team’s payroll covers its entire 70-man shihaika roster. This includes minor leaguers, but not players on the ikusei roster. So the average per player is a bit lower than if it were narrowed down to the top 25 or 40 players. NPB is also a little more egalitarian in the sense that minor leaguers earn a livable wage off.

My US dollar figures are based on an exchange rate of JPY102.5/$1, which was the market rate at the of writing. The Yen has weakened against the US Dollar by about 10 percent over the last year, so take the conversions with a grain of salt.

And aside from that, I’ll let the data speak for itself:

TeamLeaguePayroll JPYPayroll USDAverage Per Player
YomiuriCentral¥4,659,100,000$45.45m63 players, avg ¥73.95m/$721k
SoftbankPacific¥4,000,300,000$39m65 players, avg ¥61.54/$600k
HanshinCentral¥3,235,500,000$31.56m66 players, avg ¥49.05m/$478k
RakutenPacific¥2,789,800,000$27.22m62 players, avg ¥45m/$439k
ChunichiCentral¥2,633,000,000$25.69m68 players, avg ¥38.36m/$374k
LottePacific¥2,491,450,000$24.3m64 players, avg ¥38.93m/$380k
Nippon HamPacific¥2,410,500,000$23.5m67 players, avg ¥35.84m/$349k
OrixPacific¥2,397,250,000$23.38m67 players, avg ¥35.78m/$349k
YakultCentral¥2,386,200,000$23.28m66 players avg ¥36.15m/$353k
SeibuPacific¥2,242,600,000$21.88m65 players avg ¥34.50m/$340k
HiroshimaCentral¥2,061,170,000$20.1m66 players, avg ¥31.23m/$305k
DeNACentral¥1,9270,000,000$18.8m65 players, avg ¥29.65m/$290k

To add context, here are some interesting facts about NPB salaries:

  • 91 NPB players make JPY100m (about $1m) or above. 65 are Japanese, 26 are foreign.
  • Japan’s highest-paid player is Yomiuri catcher Shinnosuke Abe at JPY600m ($6m). He actually turned down a higher salary for Yomiuri, because he felt he was not ready to surpass the JPY610m that Hideki Matsui made in his final season with the Giants.
  • The highest paid foreign player is Rakuten’s Andruw Jones, at JPY400m. I believe he’s being paid in dollars, in the amount of $3.8m
  • The lowest paid shihaika roster player is Rakuten rookie pitcher Ryuta Konno, at JPY4.4m ($44k).

I’ll delve into why Japanese baseball salaries aren’t higher in a later article.

Tags: Andruw Jones, Hideki Matsui, Shinnosuke Abe

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