dodgers sign all the playersThe excitement of free agency dies once again …

According to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne, the Dodgers and ace Clayton Kershaw, who was to be a free agent after this season, have agreed to a monster seven-year, $215 million extension. Kershaw will have the right to opt-out after five years, per Shelburne.

We heard earlier that an extension might be coming this week, and Kershaw is now locked up through his age 32 season at just over $30 million per year, which is obviously a record for pitchers. It’s a tremendous amount of money to commit to a pitcher, but Kershaw will be only 26 this year, and he’s among the best in baseball. The Dodgers had to do this, and they’ve got the money to bear the risk. I doubt this deal alters the landscape for top pitching too much, given that Kershaw is both uncommonly elite and uncommonly young.

So, will the Dodgers still aggressively pursue Masahiro Tanaka? I guess we’ll see. I wouldn’t count it out.

  • Blackhawks1963

    Kaplan is reporting that the Cubs have hired Disney company to help Disneyize Wrigley. Good God. No renovation, no payroll, but hey you can have a mascot plus I’ve hired the Mouse to sprinkle pixie dust at Wrigley Field.

    • cubsfan08

      I haven’t fact checked the Kaplan article – however – when it comes to “Disneyize” places, many, many corporations do this. Customer Service seminars throughout the country employ the Disney company to improve their service. This isn’t having mascots run around taking pictures. It is simple training techniques for employees to improve a business’ customer service. I’d wager that a good number of readers here have actually attended one of these seminars. I think a more customer friendly staff at Wrigley (and all other Chicago venues) probably wouldn’t hurt.

    • baldtaxguy

      Actually, it is Telander reporting as such on Kaplan’s WGN podcast. Not sure whether you listened to it, but Telander claims that Disney personel are involved in developing future promotional/entertainment events and activities similar to what you see happening at all sporting events – the United Center was cited as an example, presumably for stuff occuring during Blackhawk and Bulls games on the video screen and otherwise. Telander says it is true (Disney “consulting” for the Cubs/Wrigley) but he is not at liberty to elaborate further on what he knows. It seemed what he described (and also did not describe) and what they discussed did not entirely message with the “Disney-fy” headline of the podcast, but its timing with Clark’s introduction this week really just generated cackles from both of them:

      “He [Telander] also talks about whether the Cubs should try to portray themselves as “tougher” and how management is bringing Disney people in to help them better “Disney-fy” Wrigley.”

      I did not hear them directly tie Disney to Clark, but maybe that is more of the story that may develop.

  • Ill see you at Sluggers.

    Kershaw’s signing could do one of two things. It could be a statement signing in regards to Tanaka in hopes of acquiring him or they could be out on Tanaka due to whatever reasons. Personally I think he’s going to feel more swayed by the Yankees. His 24-0 “perfect” record and the Yankees “strive for success” is why but for all I know he could be packing his bags for LA. We might have the money to offer but I am too pessimistic on our chances of landing him.

  • Diehardthefirst

    If Kershaw sneezes they will fly in a Mayo Clinic specialist to wipe his nose- what a sad state Teams are showing interest in young Astros catching star Castro
    of affairs

  • Diehardthefirst

    How did that happen? Sorry about that typing over prior post – actually made more sense!!

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