The dominant left-hander has established himself as one of the best pitchers Major League Baseball has ever seen, and last season, he finally earned a ring to end any debates about his legacy.
Kershaw has spent all 14 years of his legendary career with the Dodgers, but he will enter free agency this winter.
It’s hard to imagine that the 33-year-old will call it quits with so much left in the tank, so where might he spend the 2022 season?
Clayton Kershaw, Painted 74mph Cooperstown Curveball.👑 🖌️🎨🖼️ pic.twitter.com/Lb7MkqY7Tz
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) May 15, 2021
The Texas Rangers are expected to be big spenders in the upcoming offseason.
Kershaw was born in Dallas, and went to high school just 25 minutes from the Rangers’ home ballpark.
Texas has a rotation in desperate need of a makeover.
One of those starters—Jordan Lyles—will become a free agent this winter. Kershaw could provide a massive upgrade in that rotation spot.
San Francisco Giants
Kershaw no longer has a reason to chase a ring, but he still might want to go to a contending team.
If he wants to stay on the West Coast, the Giants could be a viable option.
San Francisco has an exceptionally deep rotation, and it’s good from top to bottom.
Thing is, every single one of those players will enter free agency after the season with the exception of Wood.
The Giants can try to retain as much of the staff as possible, but there will be holes to fill after this season, and Kershaw could be the solution.
The Giants are a contending team, currently sitting at 27-16 atop the NL West.
Los Angeles Dodgers
To state the obvious option, the Dodgers could bring Kershaw back on a one-year deal, a two-year deal, or even a three-year deal.
The only knock on Kershaw is his durability.
He’s failed to reach 200 innings over the past few seasons, but it’s not like he’s always on the shelf—he never fails to complete somewhere in the ballpark of 160 innings each year.
The Dodgers currently roll with an elite rotation of Trevor Bauer (2.20 ERA), Kershaw (3.18 ERA), Julio Urias (3.04 ERA), Walker Buehler (2.98 ERA) and Dustin May when healthy (2.74 ERA), although unfortunately, he is going to be sidelined for a good while with UCL damage.
Kershaw looks good in any rotation, but the Dodgers do have the personnel to overcome the loss of their 14-year ace if they part ways.
Clayton Kershaw is a free agent after this season and his teammate, Trevor Bauer is going to be earning 45 million in 2022. So that'll be interesting.
— CrigSteammenFanDan (@PadreFanDan) February 6, 2021
Kershaw has won an MVP award, three Cy Young awards, is an eight-time All-Star and a five-time ERA champion.
He has led the league in wins three times, strikeouts three times, and WHIP four times.
Aside from his rookie season, Kershaw has never posted a season ERA above 3.03.
He has a career mark of 2.45.
Needless to say, the all-time great should have no trouble finding a home this offseason.