The 2013 Astros' payroll is projected to be under 23 million dollars this season. Unless Houston decides to spend on the remaining free agents, they will have the lowest payroll in the AL and possibly MLB. It got me thinking about how teams have fared with a payroll so low. So using baseballreference.com I looked at payrolls from the last 13 seasons and took note of teams with payrolls under 40 million and their respective records.

In 2012 there were no teams with a payroll under 40 million.

From 2000 to 2011 their were a total of 35 teams who entered the season with payrolls under 40 mil. Of these 35 teams 9 had winning seasons. The 3 teams who featured payrolls under 40 mil the most were Tampa (6 times), Florida (6), and Pittsburgh (5).

Payrolls under 40 mil were more common early in the 2000's. Florida was the last team to have a payroll lower than what Houston's projects to be, and that was 21.8 mil in 2008. Florida also has bragging rights to the lowest payroll during this time span, 14.9 mil in 2006, with Tampa a close second in 2003 at 19.6 mil. Oakland in 2001 and Florida in 2000 had payrolls under 23 million. Houston will be the 6th team since 2000 to feature a payroll under 23 million.