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Detroit Tigers 2022 Roster, Options and Payroll

Major league payroll of $134 million is just below MLB average.

MLB: APR 10 White Sox at Tigers Photo by Steven King/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The 2022 Major League Baseball season is finally under way, with rosters temporarily expanded to 28 players. The Detroit Tigers presently have 34 players on the major league roster, and another eight players who have been optioned to the minor leagues. Plus, they have Michael Pineda, who is signed to a major league contract and will be joining the team once he completes his own spring training program, which was delayed by visa issues due to the owners’ lockout.

The Tigers’ roster features a few more veteran players this season, due to the free agent signings of Javier Baez, Andrew Chafin and Eduardo Rodriguez, as well as Pineda, and trades for veterans Tucker Barnhart and Austin Meadows. Add the 2021 acquisitions of Robbie Grossman and Jonathan Schoop, and the club has a pretty good compliment of experienced players to go with the rising stars that are beginning to break into the major leagues.

With the addition of veteran players comes an increase in the payroll. The Tigers now have a payroll of almost $134 million, which includes all players on the 28 man roster, plus three more on the 60 day injured list (IL), plus four on the 10 day IL, plus Pineda.

Following is a chart showing each player on the 40 man roster, with their position, age, service time, options remaining, salary, and contract status for 2023.

Detroit Tigers 2022 Roster, Options, Service Time and Payroll

Player Position Age Service time Options/ Left 2022 Salary 2023/ FA
Player Position Age Service time Options/ Left 2022 Salary 2023/ FA
Cabrera, Miguel 1B 39.074 18.101 N/A $32,000,000 FA 2024
Báez, Javier SS 29.212 6.089 N/A $20,000,000 FA 2028
Rodriguez, Eduardo LHP- S 29.085 6.130 N/A $14,000,000 FA 2026
Barnhart, Tucker C 31.175 7.075 N/A $7,500,000 FA 2023
Schoop, Jonathan 2B 30.258 8.027 N/A $7,500,000 FA 2024
Chafin, Andrew LHP 32.014 7.020 N/A $6,000,000 FA 2024
Candelario, Jeimer 3B 28.219 4.038 0 $5,800,000 FA 2024
Pineda, Michael RHP- S 33.164 9.165 N/A $5,500,000 FA 2023
Grossman, Robbie OF 32.288 7.060 N/A $5,000,000 FA 2023
Fulmer, Michael RHP 29.108 5.157 N/A $4,950,000 FA 2023
Meadows, Austin OF 27.059 3.074 2 $4,000,000 FA 2025
Cisnero, José RHP 33.081 4.020 1 $1,900,000 FA 2024
Jiménez, Joe RHP 27.165 4.061 1 $1,790,000 FA 2024
Turnbull, Spencer RHP- S 29.286 3.020 2 $1,500,000 FA 2025
Reyes, Victor OF 27.269 3.075 1 $1,400,000 FA 2025
Castro, Harold 3B 28.213 2.141 2 $1,275,000 FA 2025
Garneau, Dustin C 34.323 3.015 0 $1,175,000 FA 2024
Barnes, Jacob RHP 32.078 4.157 0 $700,000 Arb 3
Hutchison, Drew RHP 31.313 4.130 0 $700,000 Arb 4
Soto, Gregory LHP 27.140 2.102 1 $700,000 Arb 1
Alexander, Tyler LHP 27.352 2.058 2 $700,000 Arb 1
García, Rony RHP 24.194 1.142 2 $700,000 Arb 1
Funkhouser, Kyle RHP 28.107 1.133 1 $700,000 Arb 1
Skubal, Tarik LHP- S 25.223 1.114 3 $700,000 Minimum
Mize, Casey RHP- S 25.061 1.111 3 $700,000 Minimum
Haase, Eric C- OF 29.196 1.072 0 $700,000 Minimum
Rogers, Jake C 27.074 1.040 1 $700,000 Minimum
Hill, Derek CF 26.183 1.010 1 $700,000 Minimum
Baddoo, Akii OF 23.319 1.000 3 $700,000 Minimum
Lange, Alex RHP 26.272 0.112 3 $700,000 Minimum
Vest, Will RHP 27.025 0.108 3 $700,000 Minimum
Manning, Matt RHP 24.154 0.098 2 $700,000 Minimum
Foley, Jason RHP 26.242 0.033 2 $700,000 Minimum
Rodriguez, Elvin RHP 24.092 0.000 3 $700,000 Minimum
Torkelson, Spencer 1B 22.309 0.000 3 $700,000 Minimum
Garcia, Bryan RHP 27.073 1.148 2* Arb 1
Castro, Willi IF-OF 25.068 2.017 1* Arb 1
Cameron, Daz OF 25.167 0.148 1* Minimum
Clemens, Kody IF 26.047 0.000 3* Minimum
De Jesus, Angel RHP 25.138 0.000 3* Minimum
Faedo, Alex RHP 26.231 0.000 2* Minimum
Short, Zack SS 27.033 0.088 1* Minimum
Wentz, Joey lhp 24.268 0.000 2* Minimum
$133,890,000

* Options for 2022 not included yet.

Source: Cot’s Contracts

Options

A player may be optioned in three seasons in his career without clearing waivers. Only one option is used per season, so once a player on the 40-man roster is sent down, they can be freely moved between the majors and minors (after the requisite 10-day waiting period) up to five times in a given season. A player must be on optional assignment for at least 20 days to be charged with an option year.

The Tigers’ roster features 13 players who can not be sent to the minor leagues without clearing waivers, two of those being the non roster invitees (NRI’s) Drew Hutchison and Jacob Barnes who were added for opening day.

Players with at least five years of major league service time can not be optioned without their consent. Detroit has nine players in that category. Jose Cisnero and Joe Jimenez will celebrate their five year anniversaries later in the season, meaning they can not be optioned without their consent after that point.

Players who have been optioned three times and have no options left include Eric Haase, Dustin Garneau and Jeimer Candelario, as well as the two NRI’s. Those players would have to clear waivers and then be outrighted to the minor leagues.

Players optioned this spring will not have their option counted until they remain in the minor leagues for 20 days. Those numbers will change shortly and rosters will be pared down to 26 players by May 2nd.

Several Tigers have just one option year remaining, including Willi Castro, Daz Cameron, and Zach Short, who have been sent down. Others who could burn their last options in 2022 are Victor Reyes, Derek Hill, Kyle Funkhouser and Jose Cisnero.

Roster Turbulence Ahead

While the team will be without Jake Rogers, Spencer Turnbull, and Jose Cisnero for an extended period, five or six other players figure to be rejoining the team within a few weeks. Players on the injured list are accruing major league pay and service time.

Pineda and Wily Peralta will be finishing up their tune ups and are expected to join the squad, while rookie sensation Riley Greene will need to complete a rehab in the minors before a much anticipated debut. That’s up to six roster spots, plus the two temporary roster additions that could be shuffled.

Chafin and Funkhouser are virtual locks to rejoin the bullpen when they come off the 10 day IL, and Pineda could bump Tyler Alexander into a third relief role, while the two extra roster spots that will expire on May 1st were both used to add relievers. The revolving door to the bullpen will be spinning soon.

The other position to keep an eye on is the outfield, where Greene would displace an incumbent player such as Reyes or Akil Baddoo, but Hill may return sooner from the 10 day IL to get a tryout prior to the rookie sensation’s entrance.

Outright Assignment

When a player is out of options, he must be taken off the 40-man roster and clear waivers before he can be sent outright to the minor leagues. A player can be outrighted once in his career without his consent. A player who is outrighted for the second time in his career can elect free agency either immediately or after the season. Hutchison and Barnes fall into that category.

Payroll

Detroit’s opening day payroll for the 26- 28 man roster is $53 million higher in 2022 than it was in 2021, when it was $80,866,200 according to Cots contracts. Last year, the Tigers ranked 24th in the major leagues. In 2022, they are 17th, just ahead of the Minnesota Twins ($133.6M). The Chicago White Sox payroll is $60 million higher, ranking 7th in the major leagues at $193.6 million.

Four Tigers will be eligible for free agency after this season- Barnhart, Grossman, Pineda, and Michael Fulmer. Twelve players will be eligible for arbitration for the 2023 season.

The median payroll in major league baseball is about $140 million, while the average is closer to $144 million.