Clayton Kershaw Becomes Baseball’s Richest PitcherBy: Emily Greene - January 15, 2014
Today was a great day if your name happens to be Clayton Kershaw.
The 25-year-old southpaw finalized a deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Kershaw will be receiving $215 million over seven years.
This new deal makes Kershaw the highest paid pitcher in history. He will be receiving $30.7 million a year. Not only is he breaking the record as the highest paid pitcher, but he is also breaking the record for having the highest average annual value for any baseball player.
Kershaw is probably setting these records because he may just be the best pitcher in baseball. He set career bests in 2013 with 236 innings, a 1.83 ERA and 7.8 Wins Above Replacement (WAR) while striking out 232 batters. All these career bests from Kershaw helped the Dodgers reach the playoffs for the first time since 2009. For three straight years he has led the National League in ERA, as well as strikeouts and WAR for two consecutive seasons. He also received the Cy Young Award in 2013 – which he almost won unanimously. It also happened to be his second Cy Young award in three years.
Dodgers President Stan Kasten said in a meeting, “I’m hopeful that by the deadline Friday morning we can work something out.”
If Kershaw were not to sign this deal (doubtful, and he’d be pretty crazy not to), he would be eligible for free agency after the upcoming season.
Kershaw’s teammate Matt Kemp took to Twitter to congratulate the Dodgers pitcher.
NFL Live Host Trey Wingo knows that nobody is as happy as Clayton Kershaw is today.
ESPN Sports Business Reporter and ABC News Business Correspondent Darren Rovell put Kershaw’s new deal into perspective.
Kershaw and the Dodgers were in talks of a new deal last March which would have also been a seven-year deal in the $210 million range, but the Dodgers backed off. Looks like Kershaw’s 2013 season changed the Dodgers minds.