Dodgers to re-sign Clayton Kershaw

Dodgers to re-sign Clayton Kershaw

Clayton Kershaw Returns to the Dodgers. Agent Excel Sports Management is said to be in agreement with Los Angeles on a deal for next season that contains a player option for 2025 — a two-year guarantee, unless there are option vesting requirements — pending a physical. Financial terms remain unreported.

Kershaw, who is recovering from shoulder surgery in November and is expected to be sidelined for an extended period of summer, will have a physical on Thursday. This also happens to be the first day that teams can place a player on the 60-day injured list. Los Angeles has Tony Gonsolin And Dustin May Recovery from arm surgeries. One of these players will likely continue on the IL for 60 days as a corresponding move once the Kershaw deal is finalized. The Dodgers could then place Kershaw on the IL to make room on the 40-man roster for a future acquisition. (Los Angeles has not finalized its two-year deal to retain the reliever Ryan Brasier.)

Assuming he can adjust at some point in the second half, the 2024 season will be Kershaw’s 17th pitch to the Dodgers, who selected him with the No. 7 overall pick in the 2006 draft. Injuries are starting to take their toll on Kershaw, who has never pitched in 30 games in a season. Since 2015, but the quality of its results has remained largely constant. From 2009-15, Kershaw averaged 32 homers, won four straight ERA titles and captured three Cy Young Awards. Since 2016, he has averaged just 24 starts per 162-game season, but has maintained an impressive 2.55 ERA — including sub-2.50 marks in three of the past four seasons.

Kershaw clearly wasn’t 100% for most of the 2023 season. A shoulder strain put Kershaw on the injured list in July, and head coach Dave Roberts candidly admitted in September that he was playing at less than his full strength. Los Angeles limited Kershaw to five innings in each start for all but one game in his return from the injured list (5 1/3 outing in his last appearance of the season). Along the way, Kershaw’s fastball average dropped to career lows; He averaged just 89.4 mph on his fastball in his return — including an average of just 88.7 mph over his last four starts.

Despite the drop in speed, Kershaw remained very effective. In eight post-IL starts, he pitched to a 2.23 original ERA. His 22.2% strikeout rate and 11.1% walk rate were far from pre-injury levels (27.7%, 6.3%), but Kershaw was looking to make the most of what he had to offer on any given day. He hasn’t allowed more than three runs in any of those last eight games, and actually held opponents to one or zero runs in six of them. The D-back ambushed him for six runs in the first inning of his only NLDS start, however, ending his season at a low point.

It is not yet clear when Kershaw may be able to rejoin the Dodgers staff, although it is assumed that they will provide an update when his deal is announced and discussed with the media. Kershaw’s return in the second inning would provide some high-end insurance for a Dodgers rotation rife with uncertainty. Right-hander Yoshinobu Yamamoto He will adapt to a new culture and league in his first campaign this year. Right-hander Walker Buehler He is in his first full season back from Tommy John surgery. Southpaw James Paxton It is a risk of permanent injury. Right-wing youth Bobby Miller, Emmett Sheehan, Gavin Stone And Kyle Hurt He did not pitch full seasons in the big league.

As mentioned earlier, Kershaw wouldn’t be the Dodgers’ only potential addition in the second half. The aforementioned May had a Tommy John revision and flexor tendon repair in early July but will likely return to the stretch. Gonsolin, who had Tommy John surgery in late August, appears to be a longer shot at returning but will likely do so as a major leaguer if he rehabilitates in a best-case scenario.

The Dodgers are set to pay the luxury tax for the third straight season and have already reached the latest tier of luxury tax penalties. As such, any dollars committed to Kershaw will be taxed at 110%. Obviously, that won’t be a deterrent as they welcome the future Hall of Famer back for a 17th season.

In 2,712 2/3 innings pitched though his big league career, Kershaw has a 210-92 record, a 2.48 ERA, a 27.6% strikeout rate, and a 6.3% walk rate. He is a ten-time All-Star with five NL ERA titles, three Cy Young Awards and a National League Most Valuable Player Award under his belt.

Joel Sherman and Jon Heyman of the New York Post It was first reported that the Dodgers and Kershaw had reached an agreement. Andy McCullough of The Athletic reports there is a 2025 player option.

(marks for translation) Clayton Kershaw

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