The Los Angeles Dodgers and starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw have reportedly agreed to a new contract for the 2023 season. According to MLB Network Insider Jon Heyman, the deal is worth close to $20 million.
Los Angeles is coming off the best regular season in the franchises long history. They won 111 games, setting a new franchise record. However, they flamed out losing to the San Diego Padres in the NLDS.
Kershaw, despite his advanced age, pitched extremely well last season. He finished 12-3 with a 2.28 ERA, 0.94 WHIP and tossed 137 strikeouts in just 126 1/3 innings. However, he missed time during the season again with injuries.
It's actually the second straight season that Kershaw has made exactly 22 starts. That's about two-thirds of a full slate of starts. Nevertheless, the Dodgers recognize that he is obviously not done yet.
Assuming they can get Walker Buehler back next season, the Dodgers should have arguably the most lethal rotation in all of baseball. Julio Urias is a Cy Young candidate after his breakout campaign in 2022. Tony Gonsolin had an incredible first half and overall was very good. Dustin May is extremely talented and back to full health.
With Clayton Kershaw now returning to Los Angeles, the rotation should be shored up. Now there are questions elsewhere to be answered. Earlier this week, the Dodgers declined to pick up Justin Turner's option at $16 million. They did however express interest in bringing back the veteran third baseman at a lower salary.
But it's possible he walks. That could help open up cap space for free agent Aaron Judge. If Trea Turner does not return next season, Judge is certainly on the table.