OK, so the off-season has progressed relatively slowly for the Dodgers. They have a chance to change the narrative at the Winter Meetings beginning Monday. In the meantime, we suddenly have a chance to circle back to the Price, Tanaka and Kershaw storylines.
Price has a number of suitors, with the Seattle Mariners emerging as the most aggressive, according to multiple reports. A bidding war waged in prospects simply wouldn’t favor the Dodgers over the Mariners.
As for Tanaka, he could be liberated from his contract in Japan soon. MLB and NPB will reportedly have a conference call today with a formal offer for a new Posting System on the table. That’s the closest thing to a resolution to the Posting System stalemate in weeks. Whether or not the new system favors or works against the Dodgers lies in the yet-to-be reported details.
Given many chances, Kershaw has said a very little about his future with the Dodgers over the last few weeks. He is eligible for free agency after the 2014 season.
Kershaw told Yahoo! Sports’ Graham Bensinger that “I’m there next year no matter what, I’m going to be in L.A. … then after that I really don’t know what’s going to happen.” Bensinger asked Kershaw if he had a gut feeling about what might happen. “I don’t,” Kershaw said. “We’ll just see.”
Those sentiments are in line with his comments from three weeks ago, when Kershaw won the National League Cy Young Award. At the time, Kershaw said he and the Dodgers haven’t talked about a contract extension since the season ended. If that’s changed, the talks haven’t nudged Kershaw toward a “gut feeling” either way. More likely, they haven’t talked. So this story might not be wrapped up anytime soon.
Some bullet points for a Day of the Ninja:
• You could probably throw Don Mattingly‘s contract-extension talks into the mix of off-season storylines, since Mattingly made it one. “We’ve had discussions,” he told KLAC (570 AM) last night. “Everything’s going really well. Some confusion at the end of the year. I’ve had good talks with Stan, Ned, Mark Walter, Todd Boehly, about where we’re going as an organization. That’s the main thing. You want to make sure you’re in a place where you’re wanted, that the team has confidence in you. Everything’s going good. Talks have been great. I know I’m back next year.”
• Some good research here by ThinkBlueLA.com into Dan Haren’s claim to a lofty place on one of baseball’s all-time lists.
• Here’s what ESPN’s T.J. Quinn was doing 10 years ago, one of the greatest happy accidents in journalism history.
• Donald Byrd isn’t regarded as a musical genius on par with Miles Davis. But if you needed a trumpeter anytime between 1960 and 1978, you couldn’t do much better than Byrd. A versatile musician and a Ph.D., Byrd died in February at age 81. Here’s Cristo Redentor:
lomo faltato (noodles or french fries w/sauteed beef and onions — Peruvian dish.)