With opening day less than a month away baseball is right around the corner. Most news out of the MLB is surrounding performance enhancing drugs but baseball has another problem that it needs to fix, its lack of a salary cap. Of the four major American sports (football, baseball, basketball, hockey) baseball is the only sport that does not have a salary cap. In the other three sports, the cap is meant to level the playing field for teams who do not have as much money to spend on players. It is not to say that Major League Baseball does not have regulations in place, there is a luxury tax placed on teams that exceed the annual limit. However this this tax is not the solution, the discrepancy between the wealthy teams and poor teams is much more prevalent in baseball than any other sport and it is bad for the MLB’s reputation.
In 2014, Los Angeles Dodger pitcher Clayton Kershaw will make $30 million dollars, almost eight million dollars more than the entire Houston Astros team. With the lack of salary cap baseball is views as a sport in which teams can simply buy wins. The past eight World Series champions have all been by teams who’s payrolls are in the top 10 in the MLB (Cardinals, Giants, Red Sox, Yankees, Phillies).
Additionally, MLB’s top division, the American League East, boasts the largest division pay roll in the MLB. Without the implementation of a salary cap baseball will continue to have a large discrepancy between teams that hurts the market around them Small market teams like Houston, Miami, and Tampa Bay will not be able to grow the sport of baseball in their area. The implementation of a salary cap creates a level playing field for all teams and thus grows the popularity of the sport.