LOS ANGELES ( Associated Press) – It took Clayton Kershaw only days to decide whether he would stick with the Los Angeles Dodgers through 2023.
After the Dodgers led the majors with 111 wins during the regular season, but were eliminated by San Diego in the National League Division Series, Kershaw returned to Dallas, where he resided for the off-season.
The pitcher and his wife Ellen talked, and the Dodgers were able to retain Kershaw’s services.
Kershaw signed a one-year, $20 million deal with the Western Division champions. The deal included a $5 million signing bonus, to be paid on June 30, a $15 million salary, and a hotel suite during the tour.
“We felt like our time in Los Angeles wasn’t over,” Kershaw said via video link on Monday. “The way everything ended last season, we felt like we needed to try it again, so I’m excited to be back.”
For the second year in a row, the Dodgers did not extend a qualifying offer to a three-time Cy Young Award winning pitcher. Instead, they gave him extra time to consider his future.
And once again he chose to stick with the only franchise he played for during his 15-year major league career.
“I think it was my fault that it took so long to announce,” Kershaw said. “I was letting time pass and getting an MRI done. I get the feeling he saw enough of it and didn’t need it, but I guess he did.”
Lefty will turn 35 in March. He went on the disabled list twice last season.
The previous winter, Kershaw did not pitch until January. This time he started his pitching schedule on Monday.
“I feel great, really healthy,” he said. “I will be able to take my time and prepare. It will be like a normal off-season between seasons.”