Of the 12 Los Angeles Dodgers free agents this offseason, Kenley Jansen, Clayton Kershaw and Corey Seager were unique in spending the entirety of their respective careers thus far with the team.
Jansen was signed as an international free agent in November 2004, Kershaw was taken with the seventh overall pick in the 2006 MLB Draft, and the Dodgers picked Seager at 18th in 2012. There was an overwhelming sentiment not every notable free agent would remain with the team, and Seager was first to guarantee that.
Despite constant reports suggesting the New York Yankees would sign the 2020 World Series MVP away from the Dodgers, Seager wound up joining the Texas Rangers on a 10-year, $325 million contract.
The Rangers have been speculated as a potential landing spot for Kershaw, and Seager admitted to Jonah Javad of WFAA that he has been in contact with his former teammate about continuing to play together:
“I’ve had some talks with Kersh, for sure.”
The Dodgers made a bit of a surprising decision early into free agency by not extending a qualifying offer to Kershaw, which they did with Seager and Chris Taylor. President of baseball operations Andrew Friedman explained it was out of respect to not rush Kershaw into a decision.
Kershaw remains on the mend from a left flexor tendon injury and during the National League Division Series expressed confidence rest and a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection would be sufficient treatment.
What will Kershaw decide?
Prior to Seager signing with Texas, it was reported Kershaw’s decision in free agency would be between re-signing with the Dodgers, joining his hometown Rangers, or retiring.
Kershaw has regularly stated his appreciation for the Dodgers annually being a World Series contender, but some believe the allure of playing near his home and making matters easier for his family could be enough to take the three-time Cy Young Award winner to Texas.
With an MLB lockout officially in place, a resolution presumably won’t come until next year and Kershaw can’t have communication with the Rangers — or any club — for the time being.
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