Bay Area pro athletes take a pay cut

Oh those poor Bay Area athletes. They can never catch a break.

They have to deal with old facilities (A’s, Raiders, 49ers), useless owners (A’s, Raiders, 49ers, Warriors), rush-hour traffic and that pesky, thicker-than-ballpark-nacho-cheese fog.

And now this: Their average salaries are decreasing. Well, for most of them, anyway.

In a list compiled by Nick Harris of Sports Intelligence and published in ESPN The Magazine’s annual Money Issue, five of the six Bay Area teams saw their average player salary decline from 2011 to 2012. The only team that saw an increase? The Oakland Raiders, which had a $107,252 increase in average player salary.

The full list looks at the average player salaries for 14 professional sports leagues in 10 countries. 278 teams were included in the list this year.

Interestingly, even though the 49ers made a dramatic improvement on the field, finishing 13-3 after a 6-10 2011 season, their average salary dropped by $429,393 from 2011 to 2012.

The A’s, as usual, bring up the rear. They saw their average salary drop by more than half a million dollars from 2011. Their $1,845,650 average salary is the lowest in Major League Baseball.

Salary rankings of Bay Area teams

Team 2012
rank
2011
rank
Avg Salary
2012
Avg Salary
2011
Warriors 40 34 $4,083,898 $4,371,404
Giants 46 33 $3,920,689 $4,377,716
Raiders 80 85 $2,760,784 $2,653,532
Sharks 111 83 $2,358,580 $2,673,712
49ers 147 99 $2,017,647 $2,446,040
A’s 164 107 $1,845,750 $2,376,304