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Yankees make players pay for in-flight Wi-Fi despite being one of the world’s most valuable franchises: report

The New York Yankees have the second-highest payroll in MLB heading into the 2023 season and maybe that’s why players shockingly have to pay for their own Wi-Fi on flights. 

The Yankees are the fourth most valuable sports franchise in the world, valued at $6 billion according to Forbes, but one report on Wednesday revealed that the Bronx Bombers put it on the players to pay for their own internet on flights. 

Speaking with several players on the team and others throughout the league, Sports Illustrated reports that the Yankees are just one of two teams in MLB that don’t pick up the $9 tab on Delta flights. 


The other team is the Cincinnati Reds, who rank 26th in payroll with $70.6 million compared to the Yankees $267.9 million, per Spotrac. 

“It’s your fault,” center fielder Brett Gardner told Gerrit Cole when speaking to the outlet. “Your contract is too big, so they can’t pay for the Wi-Fi.” 

Gerrit Cole #45 of the New York Yankees celebrates closing out the top of the sixth inning against the Cleveland Guardians in game one of the American League Division Series at Yankee Stadium on October 11, 2022 in New York, New York.

Cole, who signed a $324 million, nine-year contract in 2019, makes up 13.4% of the payroll total. 

According to the report, an in-flight Wi-Fi plan for one team costs around $40,000 annually and costs the players individually around $350. 


“I think most of our players can afford it,” general manager Brian Cashman told Sports Illustrated. 

He’s not wrong. 

New York Yankees' Aaron Judge hits a solo home run, his 62nd of the season, during the first inning in the second baseball game of a doubleheader against the Texas Rangers in Arlington, Texas, Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2022. With the home run, Judge set the AL record for home runs in a season, passing Roger Maris.

The smallest annual salary on the Yankees payroll is still $1.3 million with Aaron Judge coming in on top, making up nearly 15% of the total payroll with his newly signed nine-year, $360 million deal.

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