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New Baseball Salary Data 1915-1969 w/ in-place CPI Conversions

Posted by admin on December 20, 2012

We already have some salary data from 1915-1969 period thanks to SABR and Doug Pappas's research, but we are now pleased to add the work of Dr. Michael Haupert. Dr. Haupert is a professor of economics at UW-LaCrosse and he has painstakingly gone through the Hall of Fame's records to find player contract information for nearly 7,000 player seasons.

The next question is always, "Well, Lou Gehrig made $416,000 in his career, what is that worth in 2012 dollars?" So in addition to the added data, we have added a form control to the salary output on player and team pages that quickly converts the player or team's salaries to the equivalent amount in a different decade using the Consumer Price Index (via the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Board). Just select a year and all salaries will be converted to the equivalent amount for that year. For example, in 2012 dollars, Lou Gehrig made $6.6m for his career, or just tad more than the $6.5m Marlon Byrd made last year.

Try it with 1927 Yankees or with Ty Cobb


The addition of Dr. Haupert's work adds considerably to our existing set of salary data as you can see in our chart below. For example, for 1922 we go from 7 salaries to 172.

+---------+--------------+--------------+
| year_ID | new_salaries | old_salaries |
+---------+--------------+--------------+
|    1915 |           77 |           44 |
|    1916 |           75 |           35 |
|    1917 |           63 |           27 |
|    1918 |           60 |           23 |
|    1919 |           44 |           11 |
|    1920 |          168 |           16 |
|    1921 |          171 |           11 |
|    1922 |          172 |            7 |
|    1923 |          182 |            9 |
|    1924 |          195 |           13 |
|    1925 |          204 |           17 |
|    1926 |          199 |           19 |
|    1927 |          194 |           36 |
|    1928 |          198 |           17 |
|    1929 |          199 |           22 |
|    1930 |          244 |           34 |
|    1931 |          207 |           23 |
|    1932 |          206 |           20 |
|    1933 |          203 |           19 |
|    1934 |          205 |           29 |
|    1935 |          190 |           18 |
|    1936 |          196 |           27 |
|    1937 |          210 |           39 |
|    1938 |          193 |           15 |
|    1939 |          206 |           25 |
|    1940 |          190 |           17 |
|    1941 |          193 |           15 |
|    1942 |          185 |            9 |
|    1943 |          166 |            3 |
|    1944 |          155 |            8 |
|    1945 |          140 |            7 |
|    1946 |          154 |           18 |
|    1947 |          114 |           12 |
|    1948 |          105 |           13 |
|    1949 |           99 |           19 |
|    1950 |           98 |           23 |
|    1951 |           91 |           15 |
|    1952 |           88 |           13 |
|    1953 |           88 |           16 |
|    1954 |           80 |           14 |
|    1955 |           93 |           28 |
|    1956 |           71 |           15 |
|    1957 |           75 |           23 |
|    1958 |           80 |           34 |
|    1959 |          101 |           53 |
|    1960 |          108 |           66 |
|    1961 |           76 |           27 |
|    1962 |           85 |           37 |
|    1963 |           72 |           32 |
|    1964 |          170 |          129 |
|    1965 |          220 |          194 |
|    1966 |          219 |          182 |
|    1967 |          243 |          213 |
|    1968 |          210 |          180 |
|    1969 |          261 |          224 |
+---------+--------------+--------------+

We also now have essentially full Yankee Salary data from 1915 to 1943.

This entry was posted on Thursday, December 20th, 2012 at 2:06 pm and is filed under Announcement, Baseball-Reference.com, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

One Response to “New Baseball Salary Data 1915-1969 w/ in-place CPI Conversions”

  1. Charles Saeger Says:

    Yet another fascinating data coup!

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