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  • SPORTS DIGEST

  • Yankees set record payroll at $230 mil; Astros $27 mil
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  • Yankees set record payroll at $230 mil; Astros $27 mil
    NEW YORK — The New York Yankees set a record for baseball's highest opening-day payroll at $230.4 million, almost 10 times what the Houston Astros are paying their players.
    After all the talk of spending restraint during the offseason, the Yankees began the season Monday well ahead of the Los Angeles Dodgers, according to a study of big league contracts by The Associated Press.
    The Dodgers at $214.8 million became only the second franchise to break the $200 million barrier. The Yankees have topped it six years in a row.
    At the other end, Houston was last at $27.3 million, down from about $61 million opening day last year and less than the major league-leading $29 million for the Yankees' Alex Rodriguez. Houston's payroll is the lowest since the 2008 Florida Marlins were at $22 million.
    After an unsuccessful first season in their new ballpark and an offseason spent shedding stars, the Miami Marlins dropped from about $90 million to 29th at $44.7 million.
    Fourteen teams topped $100 million, up from eight at the start of last season. Philadelphia was third at $160 million, followed by Boston ($157.6 million), AL champion Detroit ($150.5 million), the Los Angeles Angels ($141.9 million) and World Series champion San Francisco ($138 million).
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