Credit: Keith Allison on Flickr

The Most Underpaid Players in the MLB for 2014: 19-15

As the MLB trade deadline approaches, ScoreBig set out to identify the most underpaid MLB players. We utilized a variation of FanGraphs’ formula for the 25 Most Overpaid Players, but flipped the logic on its head. We looked at  $5.4 million as the payout-per-game-won for a MLB player (an approximation), multiplied by that player’s 2014 WAR (so far), and subtracting that total from their current salary. That leaves us with his current market value and a ranking of the 25 most underpaid MLB players in 2014.

Yesterday, we shared players 25-20. Today, we’re counting down numbers 19-15. Find out if your favorite MLB player made the list.

And don’t forget to check back tomorrow to see players 14-10.

19. Dee Gordon – Los Angeles Dodgers – Second Baseman

Salary: $515,000

WAR: 1.4

Current Market Value: $7 million

Call this part of ScoreBig’s list the “Gordon Zone.” Dee Gordon, the Los Angeles Dodgers’ speedy second baseman (of no relation to Alex), is off to a fast start in 2014 — leading the NL in both steals (36) and triples (6) and flashing some serious leather, too. He’s the son of former major league pitcher Tom “Flash Gordon, so you know the talent’s there; and if he keeps up the solid work, that $15,000 over the league minimum could sprout a few zeros in the next few years.

18. Alex Gordon – Kansas City Royals – Left Fielder

Salary: $11.3 million

WAR: 3.4

Current Market Value: N/A

Being one of the most highly touted prospects for one of the perennially worst ball clubs must be demoralizing. But the Kansas City Royals’ Alex Gordon, already eight years into a bright career, has taken it in stride, inking a four-year, $37.5 million pact with the team back in 2012. The tides may be turning for the Royals, who are only a few games out in the AL Central — and given Gordon’s super-high WAR, the team could have a lock on the division, if he keeps it up.

17. Xander Bogaerts – Boston Red Sox – Shortstop/Third Baseman

Salary: $517,000

WAR: 1.5

Current Market Value: $7.6 million

When the Boston Red Sox called up young infielder Xander Bogaerts last year, likely they didn’t realize he’d be thrust into the postseason and a world-championship-winning situation. Now with an expensive, diamond-studded ring, Bogaerts is coming into his own in the 2014 season. The slumping Sox have shifted him over to third base to make room for midseason signee Stephen Drew, so he’ll have to bump up his range from the hot corner. But at just $517,000 this season, you won’t see many deals as good as this for long in the competitive AL East.

16. Michael Wacha – St. Louis Cardinals – Starting Pitcher

Salary: $510,000

WAR: 1.5

Current Market Value: $7.6 million

At 22, Michael Wacha is the future of the St. Louis Cardinals’ pitching staff. Over two seasons, he’s sported a sub-3.00 ERA and went 2-3 in postseason play (he was the 2013 NLCS MVP). At just $10K over market value, Wacha is poised to rake in a goldmine if he can continue murdering the opposition. Enjoy the discount while it lasts, Cardinals.

15. Jean Machi – San Francisco Giants – Relief Pitcher

Salary: $505,000

WAR: 1.5

Current Market Value: $7.6 million

Relief pitchers play a valuable role in the modern game of baseball (prior to the late ’60s, they didn’t really even exist). Some are one- or two-inning specialty guys, that provide made-to-order masterpieces every time they hit the hill. The San Francisco Giants’ Jean Machi — who isn’t even the team’s closer — is one of those guys. At just over the league minimum, Machi is currently sporting an astoundingly low 0.35 ERA, a sub-1.00 WHIP, and 5 wins. Bring this guy to the bank!

We’ll be counting down the most underpaid (and overpaid) players in the MLB all week on the ScoreBlog. Check back tomorrow to see players 14-10.

By Will Levith for the ScoreBlog

Sources: Salary data: Yahoo Sports; WAR data: Baseball Reference; Formula: FanGraphs.com

Feature Image credit: Keith Allison 

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Will Levith

Will Levith is a Brooklyn-based freelance journalist, whose work has recently been published in print and online by Men's Health, Men's Fitness, AskMen, Made Man, Beckett, and the Food Network. Follow him on Twitter @Mediawill.