In a bit of hot stove news on Sunday, we learned that there’s a good possibility Max Scherzer could decide on his future team before the upcoming Collective Bargaining Agreement deadline.
Jon Heyman of the MLB Network initially reported the news, adding that the Dodgers, Giants, Angels and Mets are among the frontrunners to land the 37-year-old righty.
The current CBA between the MLB and the players association expires at midnight on December 1, meaning that fans could see Scherzer decide on his future sometime over the next three days. Should no agreement be reached before the deadline, it is believed that a major league transaction freeze will be implemented until both sides find common ground.
We’ve heard a lot of chatter the Dodgers could be one of the teams trying to secure a handful of core players before the potential lockout, but we really haven’t seen any significant acquisitions aside from lefty pitcher Andrew Heaney two weeks ago.
As it stands, the current setup for the 2022 Opening Day Los Angeles rotation looks like Walker Buehler and Julio Urias with the strong possibilities of Heaney and Tony Gonsolin. Lefty David Price could also be an option, but no matter how far he was stretched out last season, he was never really able to go much farther than four innings. Youngsters Mitch White and Andre Jackson could also be in the picture.
We haven’t heard any significant rumors about Clayton Kershaw lately, who was seemingly spared the qualifying offer to allow him more time to think about his future plans. Obviously, the Dodgers are the favorites to land Kersh, although there have been rumblings about the Rangers being interested.
There’s still not any clarity on the future of Trevor Bauer. Many pundits believe that he’ll never pitch in a Los Angeles uniform again. However, whether the Dodgers will be on the hook for his 2022 salary could be a factor in how actively the team participates in this winter’s free agent market.
The Dodgers acquired Scherzer before last season’s trade deadline in one of the most memorable summer blockbusters in recent years. After arriving in Los Angeles, Scherzer started 11 games, going 7-0 with a 1.98 ERA and a 0.820 WHIP with 89 strikeouts over 68-1/3 innings of work.
Considering Scherzer’s age and his bout of dead-arm syndrome during last year’s playoffs, it’s tough to guess the lengths of contracts he’ll be offered. With Scott Boras as his agent, I’m guessing serious minimums could be coming in somewhere around three years and $100 million.