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Reply to "What's the average income for a minor leaguer?"

TPM, I think you had it right the first time as far as this poster. ("Im"poster perhaps?) Either that or someone truly just fell off the proverbial turnip truck.

Nonetheless, others may well be interested in the info.

Every year Parade magazine (the one that comes in your Sunday paper) runs a "what people earn" edition, giving all sorts of occupations and the salaries earned in them. Always a few celebrities thrown in just for whimsy, but the rest are pretty enlightening.

Last year, our local paper added a story of its own, adding a few local folks to the mix. One was a player with the Richmond Braves (AAA), not on the MLB 40-man roster. His pay was listed as $16,000/year. That's gross, as in before taxes, folks. I suppose he might make a few more bucks if he heads to the Carribbean for winter ball. Or, like some of our local pros, he might spend his winter doing instructional camps at the local baseball academies. But basically, it's subsistence wages until you hit the bigs. Most of these guys live in low-rent apartments with SEVERAL teammates packed in there to split the rent and utilities. And they don't always eat well, either. You can make a better living selling shoes at the mall.

As for bonuses, can list for you what every player in the top 10 rounds of the June 2007 draft got as their bonuses. I think Baseball America also publishes the same info. Maybe you're Justin Upton or Rick Porcello or Matt Wieters and you can command $6 million. By pick # 10 it's $2 million. By the end of the first round it's $1 million and we've only gone 30 players deep, high school and college draftees combined. By the end of the supplemental first round, you're down around 500k, which is about 320k after taxes. By then we're talking about 60 kids out of literally millions of players with the dream. Meaning, good luck to you! Your odds are probably better buying lottery tickets at the local 7-11.

The way MLB looks at it is like this. They take everyone they really want by the 10th or 15th round tops. Then they may take a few "fliers" on kids considered "unsignable". Then they spend the last 30 rounds filling out the rosters on their low minor leagues' teams. They don't really expect any of those kids to make it, though they get their chances to prove them all wrong, and occasionally someone does overcome the odds and get to MLB in spite of it all. (Mike Piazza being the big story in that vein, but there are others.)

The ones they view as prospects get signing bonuses and educational money to entice them into the career. The others, if you come or don't come, it's no big deal to the MLB farm programs. Plenty more where those came from. It's a revolving door, as new blood comes in every year, sees what the life really is, and moves on after a few years.

You have to love the game to get through this. Talk to lots of former pros and you will hear the bitterness that often lies on the back end of chasing the dream. A lot of big dreams get crushed.

Focusing on education first and baseball second is the best advice in this thread.