Dodgers owner Mark Walter says one reason his team decided to give Clayton Kershaw a new $215MM contract is a cautionary tale about the Cubs and Greg Maddux, Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports. In 1992, a 26-year-old Maddux won his first Cy Young award as a Cub, but the Cubs let him leave as a free agent after the season. He won three more straight Cy Young awards, but he won them all with the Braves. The Braves then went to the playoffs four times before the Cubs got back to the postseason again. Here are more reactions to the Kershaw extension.
- $215MM is "crazy" money, but that doesn't mean the Kershaw deal is a bad idea, writes FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal. Rosenthal notes that, last summer, the Dodgers offered Kershaw a seven-year deal in the vicinity of $200MM, so their willingness to go slightly higher helped get the deal done. Rosenthal also notes that Kershaw's opt-out clause, which allows him to leave after five years, is a key part of the deal, since opt-out clauses are very player-friendly.
- Kershaw is close to being "the Mike Trout of pitchers," Dave Cameron of Fangraphs writes. Health permitting, he could well end up "the best pitcher of his generation." The contracts for Justin Verlander and Felix Hernandez helped set a baseline for Kershaw — Kershaw is better than either one, and was a year closer to free agency. Cameron also writes that, unless Kershaw gets hurt, he will probably opt out of his contract in five years. It appears he sacrificed a bit of upfront money in the contract in order to have the right to opt out of it.
- If you're going to give a pitcher $215MM, Kershaw is exactly the kind of pitcher who should get it, Steven Goldman of SB Nation writes. He's still just 25 and has a solid health record, and the Dodgers have gone relatively easy on his arm.
Kershaw Is Worth it! End of story.
Incredible track record, no injury concerns, extreme competitor, perfect teammate, about as high character a guy as you can find (he builds houses in Africa during the off-season for gods’ sakes), and best part? He’s only 25. If ever you could find someone worthy of a contract like this, it would be Kershaw.
could i recomend a story? I say the marlins try to sign stanton this week to a long term contract. If he doesnt agree to it, trade him before spring training. who would want hin and what would they give?
Mariners need the bat. Not sure they would include Walker in a trade but for Stanton I would
i know his value isnt as high as it used to be but the marlins are going to overvalue him. I’m sure they are going to build a trade around Walker and Franklin
$30 mil a season for any player is ridiculous. 1.8 mil per win is plain crazy. Justify it in your mind if you can, but it’s still insane.
The Dodgers have shown that they have no problem throwing money around like it’s candy. If they indeed won’t be outbid for Tanaka, even after this mega-deal, watch out… because nothing will stop them (when it comes to signing free agents)
I think Walter May think different about Tanaka. There is a limit I believe on $$.
There is a limit. Ned has been told not to have more than 7 starting all-star outfielders on the roster this year.
Honestly though, these guys have a clue. Tanaka doesn’t cost a draft pick, nor does secondary choices like Bronson Arroyo. Luxury taxes be damned, they still are trying to build within, and if there are roadblocks in development, that’s where trades come in down the road. From organizational strength.
You’re not paying for the regular season and its petty wins. You’re paying for the playoffs.
You’re paying a guy $30M+ AAV for a 1-3, 4.23 ERA post season record???
Colby Lewis and his 4-1, 2.34 ERA are getting hosed…
How’s Colby’s arm doing, by the way?
Yes, because 38 postseason innings is enough to judge a pitcher. Not to mention half of those innings he was a 20 yr old kid.
The point was there’s no way they’re paying him for the playoffs when his performance hasn’t been there, it’s been during the regular season when he’s been hands down the best pitcher since he’s been in the league.
Sounds like sour grapes to me.
“I’m actually hoping the Dodgers sign Tanaka if the Rangers don’t–but I hope the price ends up being 10yrs/$275 mil. That will make it that much more likely that the Rangers could then wait and get Kershaw when he becomes a free agent.”
You thought the Rangers would get some kind of discount?
Well, if the Rangers are going to add a pitcher, since Kershaw is off the menu for next year, they might as well go after Tanaka now.
The deal is insane, yes, but at least it establishes a ceiling on pitcher salaries for the foreseeable future. This has to be a win for all of baseball.
I’d say it’s the ceiling for top of the rotation talent. There just aren’t that many of that type of pitcher. But look out for Max Scherzer’s next deal….
Trout would be a worthy target of that kind of money IMO and I am NOT in favor of those kind of salary cap contracts. However? Seriously doubt Trout would even consider a 7 year deal. A 7y deal, w opt out after 5 wouldn’t do anything for Anaheim, but would think a 7/210m would,
Stanton? No. That is too much for him and I am a Marlins fan. He has issues and is a 1 dimensional player. I don’t think he is the next Manny Ramirez, which is what some want to make him contractually. The overall talent isn’t there. Valuable? You bet, but he has holes in his game.
Actually I wouldn’t be shocked to see a $300M deal for Trout.
Yeah – an opt out after 5 doesn’t make sense for the Angels. They already control him for 4 more years. A 5 year opt out option is essentially just buying out his arb years and one additional year of FA.
If you do the deal today it would be more like an 10 year deal with an option out after maybe 7 years.
His AAV should also be lower than Kershaw’s. The guy still hasn’t hit arbitration yet. He’ll be paid under $1M this year and no more than $11M next year. If he does a 10 year deal it should be right around $300M.
Mike Trout is going to get more than $30MM a year and he’s worth every single penny.
If Trout keeps improving his FA years should be north of $35+ million a year, really wouldn’t be shocked if he gets $40 million a year in a bidding war if he hits the open market
It seems natural to compare Kershaw and Trout because they seem like the type of players you would create in a video game. Neither has any obvious flaws and both started dominating almost immediately.
The Dodgers use MadDog as a yard stick. Thats fair, however you should ask the Giants if they didnt dodge a bullet signing Tim to a contract this large. Maddux is kind of a high bar to set
Everybody knew Lincecums mechanics were unorthodox and that he was most likely heading for trouble. It wasn’t that big of a shock and the reason they were cautious. Kershaw is like investing in Google or Apple stock. Very sound investment cause everything about him adds up
Terrible analogy re: Apple (but I get it). FYI, Apple’s stock has fallen dramatically although still going strong at $570.
Re: lincecum, his unorthodox delivery really isn’t the issue. Yeah, you may say his timing is off or he’s kicking too high or something of that nature but it has nothing to do with what critics were saying of the “wear and tear”. The wear and tear came from Lincecum not listening to trained people in terms of icing his arm and etc. He was told from the very beginning by his dad that he didn’t need to do that and that his diet regiment didn’t matter. Poor food choices + bad health preventative ways = disaster
Even a ‘bad’ Lincecum is still a pretty good pitcher. He doesn’t strike me as being stupid so I’d bet he’s already made some changes.
Relatively easy? The guy has thrown more than 200 innings since his age 21 season. Lots of K’s = lots of pitches thrown. There is a lot of mileage on his arm.
I was thinking the same thing. Seems like he and Tanaka have somewhat similar innings on their arms, and lots of people are questioning the workload Tanaka has had to handle and the adverse effects it could have going forward.
Absolutely not. The Dodgers babied Kershaw along, really, up until last season. He’s so good that he still pitched a relatively high number of innings, but very rarely did the Dodgers let him throw over 110 pitches up until this past season. Unlike, say, Justin Verlander, who has been worked far harder. And Tanaka has thrown far more pitches per start than Kershaw has. It’s a definite concern for Tanaka, but at least he’s only 25.
Lionel Bossman Craft
Kershaw has been in the top 3 for innings pitched for the last 3 seasons in the National League. He was 2nd the last 2 seasons. He’s thrown more innings and pitches then anyone else in the NL over the last 3 years combined.
You’re wrong. I don’t see how you could say that they babied him until 2013 when he’s pitched the same number of games the last three seasons and the two previous he pitched only one or two less games. His number of innings over the last four seasons is almost identical, too.
As for games over 110 pitches, you’re making stuff up. In 2013, Kershaw had 7 games where he threw 110 or more pitches. However, in 2010-2012, he had 16, 17, and 16 such games, respectively. If anything, he threw far fewer pitches this past season.
Innings are overrated. Not so long ago, 250 innings a season was considered to be an average workload for a starter.
Lionel Bossman Craft
Maybe but according to Baseball Reference, the number of pitches per game is increasing so long ago pitchers may have thrown more innings, but they didn’t throw as many pitches either.
From Baseball-Reference: “PAs per game had plummeted through the 1960s all the way down to 37.17 in 1968. Then the mound was dropped for the 1969 season, offense went up, and plate appearances rocketed up to 38.07 per game.”
As much as the game has changed over the years, it’s not fair to compare players of today to those in the 50s and before just based on glancing at stats. Alot of pitchers back then weren’t throwing as fast as they are now either so naturally it’s less strain on their arms.
So a difference of less than one PA per game is rocketing and plummeting? I think you’re going to need more than that to account for a 20% decrease in the number of innings pitched. And it isn’t difficult to find starters who pitched over 300 innings in consecutive seasons. Lowering the mound made some of the difference no doubt, but so did the introduction of speciality relievers.
Lionel Bossman Craft
They just used 1968 and 1969 as the years to show when the turnaround happened. I was going to post paragraphs of info, but post was getting long enough. Here’s the article…
The number of pitches per game data only starts in 1988, very much within the current era of pitching (in terms of specialty relief) so I’m not sure what the 8% increase over that time really represents in terms of workload for starters. It seems the only stat we’ve got that takes us back into the ’70s and beyond is innings pitched, and even without looking at a graph we know that it has gone down a lot for starters since the ’70s. I think we also have to consider that training, conditioning, and sports medicine have improved substantially over the last 30 years, but starters are still pitching fewer innings today than was once considered typical.
The article and I just used 1968 and 1969 as the reference years to show when the change happened. My post was getting long enough, I wasn’t going to post paragraphs of stats but of you want the article here it is.
Mike Trout is Awesome. He is the best player in the MLB. I hope the Yankees save all their money and give Mike Trout the biggest contract in the history of the MLB. A talent like that deserves to play with the Yankees, one of the most prestigious franchises in sports. I’m sure Mike Trout would pick New York over Anaheim any day.
How is he the best player in the MLB? There are so many others who have had better numbers, years, awards, etc…
I don’t think you will find many that don’t think Mike Trout is the best player in baseball. Even as a Dodgers fan its easy to see Trout is the best all around talent and the face of MLB for years to come. With respect to Miguel Cabrera , he can’t run or play anywhere near the defense Trout contributes. Trout will be the highest paid athlete in American sports when he gets his deal in a few years
Eh, in terms of value then Trout hands down. But I bet if you put it to a vote you’d get decent split between Trout, Cabrera, and Kershaw as who’s the best in MLB right now.
Lionel Bossman Craft
Baring slumps and injuries.
My Reaction…. Thank you Mark Walter, Stan Kasten, Magic & Co., for doing your best to make us try to forget about Chase Carey, Peter Chernin, and that lovey-dovey McCourt couple.
Amen…and to also rebuilding the farm system and scouting department
And for remaking the Dodgers into the most hated team in baseball. We might just have to get used to it.
Here here! Feels good.
Dodgers still wont win a world series
Lionel Bossman Craft
Dodger fans will love this until they ticket prices start to rise.
Teams raise ticket prices when they raise the team salary, teams raise ticket prices when they lower team salary. The simple truth is teams will always raise ticket prices regardless. But an ownership putting the revenue back into the team is better than an ownership that just wants to pocket the profits.
Lionel Bossman Craft
You’re right ticket prices will increase regardless just because of inflation, but the increase will be sharper now. If the Dodgers go out and sign Tanaka and resign Hanley plus whatever else they decide, it will eventually be reflected in ticket and concession prices when the Dodgers have a $275 million payroll.
Ticket prices will go up as the stadium sells out more games, not because of payroll increases. They’ve already started setting premium prices for the most desirable games. If you want to know where the money is coming from, look at your cable bill.
Lionel Bossman Craft
That’s fine but the investors and owners are going to want to see some profit. If Kershaw is slated to make $1.8 million a start (not including the rest of the team plus all the operating costs of the stadium), the rest has to be split among the stakeholders. Unlike the Yankees who are owned by the Steinbrenner family, the Dodgers have many large investors which is why it’s perceived they have more money available.
i see no proof in any of ur 3 posts just speculation
I agree that they will want to see a profit, but I also see that they have a longterm plan for that, and also that the new media deal is the main driver of franchise revenues. Two previous owners extracted value from the Dodgers. The new owners recognize the need for rebuilding.