In the first full day back in action, teams around baseball began spinning their respective wheels in terms of major league roster additions. News was coming in left and right as the day progressed, but some big news struck for fans of the Dodgers a little before 6 p.m. Eastern time when reports surfaced that 33-year-old Clayton Kershaw was returning to the team on a one-year deal, pending a physical.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic was among the first to report the news, indicating the pact is worth $17 million with incentives. In some ways, this new contract has the same flavor of the deal Kershaw agreed to before the 2019 campaign, when he inked a three-year deal worth $93 million.
After the 2018 season, Kershaw had the chance to opt out of his seven-year deal and choose free agency for the first time in his career, but he and the Dodgers reached a new three-year deal on the very same day he was eligible to opt out. Even though the lefty fought several injury battles during the 2018 season, the fact that his extension was only three years suggested to fans that he either didn’t have much left in the tank or was unsure of how effective he could be moving forward.
Now, as the smoke settles on this new one-year deal, one must wonder how serious his elbow injury actually was last year and whether he’ll be good to throw all out on Opening Day. All current reports reveal that he’s fully healthy.
As it stands, several starting pitchers are in the mix for the Los Angeles Opening Day rotation. For certain, Walker Buehler and Julio Urias have spots if they’re healthy. Newly acquired lefty Andrew Heaney should have a rotation spot, while righty Tony Gonsolin and veteran lefty David Price could be in contention for one of the final few spots.
Skipper multiple said on Friday that he “wouldn’t close the door completely” on Trevor Bauer being in camp, but that he isn’t aware what was happening with MLB’s investigation.
Regardless, Kershaw spent 69 days on the shelf last year with elbow issues from early July to mid-September before rushing himself back too soon and going on the IL for good on October 3.
In 2021, Kershaw finished the season with a 10-8 record and a 3.55 ERA with 144 strikeouts over 121-2/3 innings and 22 starts. The 3.55 ERA was the highest of his career aside from his rookie campaign in 2008.
Lifetime, Kershaw has made 376 starts and has posted a 2.49 ERA with a 9.8 K/9.
47 thoughts on “Kershaw, Dodgers Reportedly Agree to One-Year Deal”
I’d rather have Clayton at 17 mil than Price at 16, but I guess at least for the time being, we have both.
JP Morosi is reporting the Dodgers have put a multi-year offer out to Freddie. Of course, multi year means more than one year. Maybe we offered him a 2 year deal…………………….or maybe 6………………..or maybe something in between. I’m kind of surprised he hasn’t already signed with someone today, but Morosi says AF is making a big push to sign him. I would imagine one or two others are as well.
If Kersh would have gotten a qualifying offer, his base salary would have been higher. Maybe Friedman was stuck on the 17 million all along.
I think Freddie should get 6.
Bauer’s team will make a strong argument that he should be reinstated. At this point I agree.
The judge threw out the woman’s request for a restraining order. The DA decided not to press charges. My own feelings as I have daughters, nieces, aunts & women friends that have been assaulted are that while he is a disgusting excuse for a human they have no legal recourse. If I were the San Diego woman I would press civil charges and hope he pays here off. I have no clue what the MLB will do. Personally I would prefer he not play for the Dodgers but as there is a huge contract in play I think he may pitch and we get to boo him. Personally I will turn off the tv and not root for the team that day. But life goes on.
We seldom see one player play with one team his entire career anymore. I hope Kershaw does with the Dodgers. Of course it’s paramount that he is healthy and effective too.
Great to see Clayton work out a deal with the team, i hope he is healthy, and earns every incentive in the contract.
I figure it’s going to take six years to get Freddie, if he is willing to take five years he will stay in Atlanta.
I read where Atlanta has been in talks with the A’s about Olson. It’s possible that they would prefer him because of age, even though he only has two years of control. He happens to be an Atlanta native so they might feel they could re-sign him in two years.
Maybe they’ve given themselves until tonight to swing a deal with the A’s and if that can’t be done, they come back and give Freddie his 6th year. His wife is from Florida and even though he’s from SoCal, I’m betting he’ll bow to her wishes and stay in the southeast if the offers wind up being very similar.
I sure missed my guess on this lockout, I thought we would lose 40 games, now we’re not losing any. I’ve never been so happy to be so wrong.
Okay guys the clock is ticking, according to Morosi we’ve made a formal offer, and Freddie is supposed to make a decision by tonight.
The longer he waits to decide, the more likely I think he stays in Atlanta.
If his preference was to come here, I think he probably would have decided by now. If his preference is to stay with the Braves (his wife is from Florida), the more likely he’s just trying to squeeze every possible dollar out of them.
AF just made his offer last night, so looks like they want to push FF into making a decision right away, so the Dodgers can move on if they need to.
Do you think AF would make serious push for Olsen if FFstays in Atlanta?
Freddie is a rare get if you can actually convince him to come. And he doesn’t cost any major prospects.
We really don’t need another first baseman because we have Muncy, and Olson is going to go to someone at a very high prospect price, so I’m guessing AF will not go after him. He might inquire but I think that’s as far as it goes.
I saw they were interested in Soler. Why trade for Olson when we already have plenty of options at 1B. Freeman only costs $$$$. Why give up valuable prospects when you can sign a FA.
I was disappointed to see Rodon sign with the Giants if he is healthy, and his shoulder issues at the end of last season were minor, the Giants got a heck of a pitcher.
With Clayton coming back for sure now, I think Andrew will stand pat with the starting pitchers for now, if Clayton’s elbow starts causing problems I could see an in season trade.
Are you assuming he’s going to have Bauer in the rotation all year when you say you think he’ll stand pat? I think he’ll go get someone else even with both Bauer and Kershaw available but if he knows he’ll have Bauer (and is willing to keep him), that might lower the level of the guy he goes after.
Consider what we have right now:
Buehler – world class
Urias – right behind
Bauer – might be suspended. Don’t know how thrilled his teammates or fans are to have him return.
Kershaw – elbow could go out tomorrow
Gonsolin – don’t know if his shoulder is good
Heaney – has never proven himself
Price – pretty far over the hill
White – unproven
Jackson – unproven
Pepiot/Miller/Knack – not ready yet
To me that says we need another major league arm. But I will definitely bow to Andrew’s wisdom in that regard.
That’s depressing Jeff. Let’s get Montas back. Was trading Montas a below average decision?
Heaney is prone to giving up the long ball. He could fit right in.
Montas was part of the Rich Hill/Josh Reddick trade and although Reddick was a total bust here, Dick Mountain definitely made a good contribution. In the grand scheme of things it wasn’t a horrible trade, in my opinion.
Montas has gotten much better since we traded him and has two years of control remaining. He’s going to cost somebody some pretty major prospect capital.
Good assessment jeff. With Bauer we stil. Need 2 more starters. Won’t go far with that bunch. Our lack of success in post season the past 10/12 years hal always been pitching.
Just saw that DH Cruz is going to Nationals on two year deal. IMO he didn’t make sense for Dodgers the way they value versatility and will rotate guys at DH to give rest.
I’m not sorry to see that and I’d much rather see Cruz with the Nats than the Pads.
Agreed. I am beyond surprised that there have been no Eddie Rosario rumors! He killed us in the post season.
Okay Jeff you’ve convinced me about the need for another pitcher, but Rodon, is gone to the Giants, and the Mets just traded for Basset. Those were my top two targets, so who’s next on the list?
Well, there’s still Manaea and Montas on the A’s.
Gray, Mahle and possibly (but not likely) Castillo on the Reds.
Plus others I’m sure I’m not even thinking of.
Of that group, give me Mahle, but he would probably cost quite a bit in prospects.
By the way, Joe Kelly has signed a two year deal with the White Sox.
Mets got bassist for their 6 and 20 prospects, both pitchers.
I knew Chris could pitch, but didn’t know he could also play the bass. 🙂
Maybe Brett Eibner is available to pitch. I heard he’s been working out with Stetson Allie.
Dennis Schlossman, Tracer of Lost Pitchers
I’m with you Mahle then Montas, I guess.
Joe Kelly signed with the White Sox, who have a loaded bullpen.
And as you said earlier, so do we. Still hoping Kenley returns. I really liked the the way he added pitches to his repertoire rather than 90 % cutters.
Completely agree Gary. I’d really like to see Kenley back here. He’s made himself into a brand new pitcher.
If he leaves, I sure hope it isn’t to go to SF or SD, but I could see either of those happening.
I am thinking the Dodgers are not going to meet his price. Someone else will.
If Freddie goes somewhere else, Bauer gets suspended and Villar and Cruz find better deals, think of all the money AF will have left over.
With Kenley, I think he has appreciated the Dodgers, but not always the fans reaction when he struggled. He also believes he deserves top pay and for that reason I fear he could leave. We might be Ok without him, but definitely better with him. He is an all time Dodger great. I’m not high on Cruz. While he has defeated Father Time year after year, one of these years he will decline in performance. If we get Freeman, we won’t need any other adds, as Muncy, Taylor and Pollock will all get time at DH and others as well.
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I think your comments on KJ are spot on.
Also agree on Cruz. When he was traded to the Rays at the deadline last year his production suffered, so either that was an aberration or his decline has already started.
If we don’t get Freddie (and I’m not thinking we will at this point), I wouldn’t mind going after that hot shot Japanese outfielder, Suzuki. He can play left and right and even a little third base, and could step into Pollock’s spot when he leaves next year.
We’ve done nothing big and we are ranked #1. There’s good reason for that. I’m confident Friedman knows what he’s doing. The league will continue chasing us
I’m still hoping we get Freeman. I kinda doubt it too as he will likely remain a two way player for at least 3 more years and we have a first baseman already and we have a young hitter, Vargas, who, unless things change, looks like his only spot is first base. I know it’s important to fit in your own where possible, and we’ve done that successfully for a long time, but when you can get a home grown talent like Freddie Freeman you do it.
Hanser Alberto? Head scratcher for me.
He can play second, third and short and has well over a .300 average against lefties, lifetime. Also a decent fielder. Only downside is that he can’t hit righties.
View him as an upside improvement over Neuse.
Rosenthal says we were in on Harrison before he signed with the White Sox.
Villar is going to get a pretty hefty deal from someone (more than AF would pay him).
I still might have preferred Solano to Alberto but I will bow to Andrew’s superior knowledge.
I just think they have enough utility type players already. Sources say Cruz is down to two teams, LA and SD. Gray traded to the Twins.
How many of our utility guys are pretty decent fielders and have a lifetime batting average against lefties of .333?
And although he doesn’t walk much he also doesn’t strike out much.
You’re always upset at how much CT3 strikes out. Here’s your answer to that.
I agree. Likely to provide depth. Good lifetime avg of .276. But subpar OBP of .298. Doesn’t strike out much but doesn’t walk either. Based on fielding pacts plays good defense at 2B,SS and 3B. Not much power but did hit 12 Hrs one year with Orioles in 550 at bats.
Yankees just acquired Donaldson and Falefa from Twins for Sanchez, and Urshela. That gives them their 3B and SS.
Good deal for the Yanks. Solves two needs.
Actually solves a third need also. It was time to let Sanchez move on. Maybe a change of scenery will do him good.
Cruz down to Dodgers or Padres.
Reliever Carlos Martinez to Giants. Will help them if he is healthy.