Kershaw, Dodgers agree to three-year, $93M deal

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Faced with an already-extended deadline to exercise his opt-out clause, Clayton Kershaw reached the most logical conclusion to his amicable negotiations with the Dodgers: He looked to the future. The Dodgers' ace would do so with the hope of extending a similar average annual value over the course of a longer contract, but both sides are working toward a resolution before Kershaw ventures into the open market. The new agreement includes $4 million annually in performance bonuses based on starts, in four $1 million increments. Signed in January 2014, it called for salaries of $32 million next year and $33 million in 2020.

He posted a 2.73 ERA in 2018, but he has spent time on the disabled list during each of the past three seasons with back issues.

Kershaw, 30, initially had until Wednesday at 9 p.m. PDT - three days after Sunday's season-ending loss to the Boston Red Sox in the World Series - to decide whether to opt out of the two years remaining on his contract. He signed a seven-year, $215 million with the franchise in 2013 that included an option that he could become a free agent after the fifth-season.

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"We could not have any more respect for any individual than we have for Michael", general manager Chris Antonetti said.

"Nor did Friedman know what to expect from Julio Urias, the talented starting pitcher who returned from shoulder surgery in September and helped out of the bullpen (Urias will "impact our 2019 team" in some capacity", Friedman said).

"It was more valuable to me to just stay here", he said.

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Kershaw has a career 153-69 regular-season record with a 2.39 ERA in 318 games but it's in the postseason where his numbers drop.

The Dodgers made two consecutive trips to the World Series for the first time since 1977 to 1978.

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