The deadline for Clayton Kershaw to opt out of his contract passed without an official announcement of his status Friday afternoon, but reports indicated the Los Angeles Dodgers ace would stay with the team -- though the structure and amount of his contract going forward was still in the air.
Kershaw's current deal has two more seasons remaining on it worth $65 million. The 30-year-old originally had a Wednesday deadline to opt out of the contract and become a free agent, but the two sides agreed Wednesday to extend the deadline to Friday at 4 p.m. ET, 1 p.m. in L.A., in hopes of agreeing to a new, longer deal.
Friday morning, The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal reported that while both Kershaw and the Dodgers wanted a new deal to get done, the two sides could go beyond the deadline -- though, as Rosenthal reported, "at that point other teams will enter mix."
Shortly before noon PT, multiple reports surfaced that the Dodgers and Kershaw were closing in on a new deal.
Less than 30 minutes before the deadline, Rosenthal reported that the deal the team and player were discussing would add another year but would fall short of $100 million in total value.
Kershaw will be 31 when the 2019 season opens, and he has a career record of 153-69 with an ERA of 2.39 -- all with the Dodgers. Hampered by injuries in 2018, he started 26 regular-season games and posted a 9-5 record with a 2.73 ERA.
With the Dodgers for 11 seasons, Kershaw is a seven-time All-Star and a three-time National League Cy Young Award winner. He won the NL Most Valuable Player Award in 2014, when he finished 21-3 with a 1.77 ERA.
He has struggled in the postseason throughout his career, however. He is 9-10 in the playoffs with a 4.32 ERA, and he has surrendered 22 home runs in 152 innings. In the recently completed World Series, he lost two games to the Boston Red Sox and posted 7.36 ERA in 11 innings.
--Field Level Media
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