One of the biggest storylines of the Dodgers 2023 season, has been about whether or not this would be the final year for Clayton Kershaw. Kershaw has signed multiple one-year deals in recent years to maintain flexibility for both himself and the team while he figures things out.
The veteran has dealt with injuries almost every season of late, but he says that he still has a love for the game of baseball. Nobody wants to see Kershaw hang it up, and it will be a very sad day for the Dodgers organization when that time finally comes.
As he took the mound for the final time in the regular season this year, the thought does come up once again. But manager Dave Roberts believes that Kershaw would keep his decision under wraps to avoid any major fanfare.
“There’s no sense (of that). I think that’s the way Clayton would want it. I think right now, we’re just solely focused on the postseason. With Clayton, when you’re as great as he’s been for this length of time, there’s certain fanfare that comes with it. It’s not who he is. He’s just a very humble person. So I do think about it. I think there’s an undertone this potentially could be his last regular-season game with the Dodgers. I don’t know that. So I don’t let my mind go too far into that. But you know, when it happens, which is inevitable, we’ll give it its due. But I just don’t think that’s what Clayton wants.”Per Dave Roberts via SNLA
If this is it for Kershaw, he will finish his final season on a high note. He posted a record of 13-5 and had an ERA of 2.46. It was another solid year for the veteran, and he helped keep LA stable during some tough times this season.
The future Hall-of-Famer put together one of the best careers in MLB history and finally got his elusive World Series ring in 2020. The hope is that Kershaw can help this team win another World Series this season, and then return to defend the crown next year.
But the team will allow him to figure things out, just like they’ve done each of the last few offseasons. President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman recently said that he can’t imagine the Dodgers without Kershaw and that he hopes he returns.
But if this is the end of his legendary career, his final two starts came against the rival San Francisco Giants, and he wouldn’t want it any other way.
Photo Credit: Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports
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