Nov 2, 2011, 11:00 AM EDT
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John Lannan stands to earn a sizable raise through arbitration.
Mike Rizzo was asked during a conference call with reporters last week what kind of budget he's been given for next year's payroll. The Nationals general manager politely declined to divulge any numbers, saying only that he has been given parameters by ownership and knows how much money he has at his disposal to spend in 2012.
This much we can say with a fair amount of certainty: The Nationals' payroll should increase next season, perhaps by a significant amount, depending on what moves Rizzo makes this winter. And if that is the case, this will mark the fifth consecutive year the Nats' payroll has gone up since its low point of $37.3 million on Opening Day 2007.
Some of this has to do with free agents added to the roster, but a good amount also has to do with the raises that will be handed out to current players who are quickly gaining more big-league service time.
Two of the biggest increases from 2011 to 2012 will come from the raises built into the Nationals' two highest-paid players: Jayson Werth and Ryan Zimmerman. Werth will earn a salary of $13 million next
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