In Major League Baseball, the bottom line for each team is more closely monitored than ever before. More attention is placed on team payroll and how it correlates to on-field success.
The 2012 season was a prime example. Of the teams ranked in the top 10 in payroll, only five qualified for the postseason. By contrast, the Oakland A's had the second-lowest payroll in baseball, yet they nearly made it to the ALCS.
It's all about trying to get the most bang for the buck, especially for small- and mid-market teams who have limited resources.
Oakland not only had the second-lowest payroll, it also had the third-worst attendance in the American League. With limited revenue streams, it beat the odds.
The Tampa Bay Rays have qualified for the postseason three times in the past six years despite perennially being at or near the bottom in payroll. They have been the poster child for getting the most bang for their buck.
This year, several teams find themselves near the top of the standings despite their payroll limitations. Just how are they doing it?
Here is a ranking of MLB teams and their ability to stretch the almighty dollar.