Today’s 10 a.m. Pacific Time press conference announced the signing of Clayton Kershaw. General Manager Ned Colletti and team President Stan Kasten came on about 10:13 a.m. and announced that a deal had been reached. Kershaw’s accolades, including winning 2 Cy Young Awards in the past three seasons and the work that Clayton Kershaw does both on the field, in the clubhouse, and off the field were discussed by the Dodgers’ brass men.
The extension officially keeps Clayton Kershaw in Dodger Blue through at least the 2018 season and, at Kershaw’s discretion, runs through 2020. The 7 year, $215 million deal was announced through the media earlier this week.
According to Kasten, the process to lock Kershaw in to a longer-term deal has been ongoing since last March. The parameters of the deal were always in the neighborhood of the final deal, though there were some alterations mostly in terms of years and flexibility for Kershaw.
Kasten also stated that right now the team is working on a long-term strategy and that the effort is still focusing on putting the best team on the field possible while also building for the long-term future of the team. Kasten also stated the team is aware of the luxury tax consequences of the current payroll and states that the team has awareness of the tax “to the decimal.”
Kershaw was not present at the press conference, but Kasten did state that the pitcher would be available via telephone later on in the day. Kershaw has reportedly been traveling extensively this week, and that was given as the reason why he was not present at Dodger Stadium for the press conference.
In regards to Masahiro Tanaka, Colletti stated that the team is talking to agent Casey Close, they will speak with him today, and talks are ongoing. However, contrary to some reports, no deal with Tanaka has been finalized.