We still have a few weeks of MLB lockout to endure before the fun stuff starts happening again, so for now we continue to prognosticate, pontificate, and also see what the experts are saying about players for when free agency resumes. On that note, most industry insiders who’ve spoken about long-time Dodgers ace, Clayton Kershaw, feel the future hall of famer will almost definitely be back in blue for 2022.
Earlier this week, MLB insider for the Athletic and former GM, Jim Bowden, dropped his thoughts on Kershaw and what his next contract may look like. Importantly, he too feels that the left-hander returns to LA for his 15th season. However, it will be for much less than he’s earned in the past.
He’s not going to command the $31 million annual salary he received the past three years. But how much of a pay cut is he willing to take? … I’m guessing his next contract will be a one-year deal with the Dodgers that’s loaded with incentives based on innings pitched and games started.
WATCH: Dodgers Insider Makes BOLD Prediction on Clayton Kershaw’s Future, LA’s Possible Rotation for 2022!
The ace is coming off of a 3-year, $93 million extension signed after the 2018 season. That year he posted another solid campaign but one that once again saw him miss several starts due to injury. As Bowden mentions, Kershaw hasn’t made 30 starts or surpassed 180 innings since 2015, which is a lot of bullets ago.
We discussed the incentive idea for Kersh earlier this offseason. For someone of his stature and place in the game, it feels almost like a slap in the face. But, as costs go up for the Dodgers again in 2022, payroll will surely become an issue for Andrew Friedman and company. He’ll be 34 by opening day and coming off the first arm injury of his career. LA absolutely needs help in the starting rotation next season. Can Clayton Kershaw still offer enough and add enough with so much stacked against him?