is noted for a mostly home-grown roster, and the organization is usually at or near the top of farm system rankings. Even though they annoy me, they deserve a lot of credit for what they've done. The Braves, BTW, were built largely on home grown talent, trades and waiver claims. Their 2013 payroll was about $130 million lower than the Dodgers'.
I don't know how Baseball Weekly reached the conclusion that the Dodgers have had a great farm system (do you have a link for that, BTW?), but if this is the case, why wasn't there more evidence of it at the major league level? And why did they go on a spending spree that more than doubled their payroll compared to last season? The LA Times noted this season that in terms of potential trades, they have a lot to offer in ways of money and not much in terms of prospects.
Puig was signed to a $42 million contract after he defected, shortly before the new limits for international prospect signings went into effect. He spent less than a year in the minors.
I'd also add that one of the advantages the high budget teams have is that they can extend and re-sign their players beyond the team control years. The Yankees, after all, weren't just about free-agent signings but were also able to keep a really good core together for years (most notably, Jeter and Rivera being career Yankees). A lot of teams can't afford to do it. There's a reason why the full title of Moneyball is "the art of winning an unfair game"; MLB teams are not operating with the same set of challenges.
ETA: I'll just add this re the effect of economic disparities in the playoffs.