There's an amusing story on the Seattle Post-Intelligencer site (aside: what exactly is an "intelligencer?") regarding a discrepancy between the Mariners' reported 2005 payroll and that listed in the AP story many of you may have viewed labelled "2005 Baseball Final Payrolls." The M's did indeed spend just a hair short of one hundred million dollars when you take into account all of the the guys they traded or released but still had to pay.
Art Thiel writes that Seattle management was "sufficiently aggravated that Tuesday it reluctantly released the club's complete player payroll." One look at these figures and you can see why they were hesitant. The '05 Mariners paid Bret Boone $9.107 million, Adrian Beltre $10 million, and Joel Pineiro $4.2 million. For their trouble they received VORPs from those guys of 4.4, 15.1, and 4.4. And those were the guys that played! How about $3.35 mil to buy out Scott Spiezio's contract? And $3.59 mil to pay Jeff Cirillo to play for the Padres? Tack on another $3.4 million for this perfecta of released players: Aaron Sele, Pat Borders, and Wiki Gonzalez. Wowzers.