Expect the Braves payroll to rise again in 2023

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The Battery is the best thing to happen to the Atlanta Braves. It is printing money for the organization, giving Alex Anthopoulos financial flexibility that would have been unthinkable just a few years ago. The Braves came into the 2022 season with their highest payroll ever, and they spent a boatload of more cash at the trade deadline by acquiring Raisel Iglesias and Jake Odorizzi. When it was all said and done, the Braves had the eighth-highest payroll in all of baseball at $188 million, and fans can expect it to be even higher next season.

Braves Chairman Terry McGuirk says his next goal is to get the Braves to a top-five payroll.

Now, in terms of committed dollars to 2023, the Braves would already be a top-five payroll heading into next season, but teams behind them — like the Dodgers and Yankees — are set to spend in bunches this winter.

I would expect the 2023 payroll to be well north of $200 million by the end of next season. Right now, they have $164 million committed to next year’s 26-man roster, but some of that can be shed by releases and trades. The Braves will likely try to aggressively offload the contracts of Jake Odorizzi, Marcell Ozuna, and Eddie Rosario this offseason, even if it means they have to attach prospects to make the deal work.

This is a new era of baseball in Atlanta. From this point forward, they should be one of the biggest spenders in the sport. That is a scary thought for opponents, considering the Braves already have nearly the entirety of their core locked up for the next decade. All Alex Anthopoulos has to do is fill in the holes, which there aren’t many, and he’ll have a boatload of cash at his disposal to sign top-of-the-line free agents.

Photo: Austin McAfee/Icon Sportswire

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