From the NY Times, Salaries Provide Window Into M.L.S.
For years, it had been assumed that the league’s eight teams operated under a strict salary cap, with maximum salaries set at $280,000 and minimums at $25,000. The facts are quite different. As a single-entity operation, where the league negotiates and owns all player contracts, exceptions are quite common.
According to the list, 14-year-old Freddy Adu, who will be the first selection in the league’s draft Friday in Charlotte, N.C., is the highest-paid player, due to make $500,000 this year with D.C. United. What is more sobering is the large number of young, mostly American players who earn less than $50,000 a year. In all, the average salary is $80,862, with a decidedly middle-class median of $52,250. D.C. United has the highest payroll over all, at $2.75 million; Dallas has the lowest, at $741,515.
Keep in mind that the payroll totals the NY times article gives doesn’t include players who are out of contract or renegotiating with the league. For example, Dallas’ low payroll is certain to go up as they have 2 major players slots to fill.