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Baseball Major League Baseball average salary rises above $3.8-million

FILE - In this Aug. 25, 2014, file photo, Miami Marlins' Giancarlo Stanton celebrates his home run against the Los Angeles Angels during the fourth inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif.

Chris Carlson/AP

Major League Baseball's average salary shot up to more than $3.8-million (U.S.) this year following the steepest rise since 2001, putting big-leaguers on track to top the $4-million barrier for the first time in 2015.

The Major League Baseball Players Association said Tuesday the average salary was $3,818,923, up from $3,386,212 last year. The 12.78-per-cent hike was the biggest since a 12.83-per-cent rise from 2000 to 2001.

Player salaries are spurting after several years of more modest gains. The increase is fuelled by record revenue in the $9-billion range, much of it from national television contracts and club deals with regional sports networks.

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The average topped $1-million for the first time in 1992, crossed the $2-million barrier in 2001 and the $3-million mark in 2010.

MLB's wages are a stark contrast to the economy at large. The average U.S. wage rose 1.3 per cent in 2013 to $43,041, according to the U.S. Social Security Administration.

Figures are based on 910 players. The union has based its annual studies on rosters and disabled lists as of Aug. 31 – the last day before active rosters expand from 25 per team to 40.

The commissioner's office, which uses slightly different methods, put its average at $3,726,243, an increase of 12 per cent from last year's $3,326,645. MLB revised its figure Tuesday from an initial average of $3,692,123 it calculated last week.

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