FanGraphs.com called Clayton Kershaw’s contract a “ridiculous bargain,” at least if he opts out of the final two years. TheScore.com called it “a risk, but not a significant one for team or player.” That’s because they broke the flow chart, writes Grant Brisbee of SBNation.com.
SportsOnEarth.com had a well-informed analysis of the economic situation in baseball that neither trashed nor praised Kershaw’s contract, but concluded this: “knowing the money is there to help if needed, it’s easier to take those shots now than it ever was.” Similarly, ESPN.com said that a contract of $300 million over 10 years — essentially the same average annual value that Kershaw got, only over a longer term — would be “a smart move for a team with the ability to be able to absorb the downside risk.”
FanGraphs.com called seven years and $230 million a “decent price.” NBCsports.com took a stab at what Kershaw might give the Dodgers before the contract runs out. We know what Kershaw gives off the field.
Everyone’s a winner, writes colleague Jill Painter, except there are losers in the deal. They work for teams in San Francisco, Denver, Phoenix and San Diego. Writes ESPN’s Buster Olney: “The Blue Jays haven’t made the playoffs in two decades, and the Orioles have made it once in the past 16 years. And this is what the existence of the Padres, Rockies and Diamondbacks promises to be, in light of the Dodgers’ massive payroll advantage.”
Olney goes on to suggest that the Kershaw contract could be a thorn in the side of labor peace, if enough small-market owners needed this as ammunition to complain about a lack of parity in baseball.
If the Dodgers win the next three World Series before the Collective Bargaining Agreement expires in 2016, will fans complain about a strike or lockout?
Some bullet points for a Magen David Day:
• According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, Kershaw’s contract doesn’t have a no-trade clause. He would obtain the right to void the deal if traded. If he is dealt to another club during a season, Kershaw can void the rest of the contract before the start of the following season. If Kershaw is dealt during the offseason instead, he has the right to void the remainder of the contract after the end of the ensuing campaign. He would also pick up a one-time, $3 million bonus if he is traded during the offseason.
• Busy owners’ meetings today in Paradise Valley, Arizona. MLB owners unanimously approved an expanded replay system for 2014.
• Don’t expect the Los Angeles Angels to leave Anaheim anytime soon.
• This story was filed in May 2006, a couple weeks before the Dodgers drafted Kershaw.
• Some more odds courtesy of Bovada.lv: The Yankees are 3:2 favorites to sign Masahiro Tanaka, followed by the Dodgers (11:4), Mariners (5:1), Cubs (7:1), Red Sox (10:1), Diamondbacks (12:1), Rangers (15:1), Angels (15:1), Blue Jays (18:1) and White Sox (18:1).
• Online fan voting has begun in the Los Angeles Sports awards. “Puigmania,” the Dodgers advancing to the National League Championship Series and Kershaw winning the Cy Young award are all on the ballot. Click here to vote (registration required).
• Former Dodgers GM Fred Claire believes that China is the next frontier for foreign players.
• Madvillian’s combination of Madlib’s lyrical storytelling and MF Doom’s beats pulled straight from your dad’s funk collection is a formula we don’t see enough in hip hop. Here’s “Curls”: