Garrett Atkins: 'I'll be on another team next year'

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For now at least the Rockies have held off on releasing Garrett Atkins, but the veteran third baseman admitted yesterday that he sees zero chance of remaining in Colorado: “I know that I’ll be on another team next year and I’m just getting ready to have a good season.”
Atkins’ performance has declined significantly in each of the past three seasons, leading to a career-worst .226/.308/.342 line in 399 plate appearances while losing his starting job this year.
He earned $7 million for that awful production and would be in line for a similar salary in 2010 via arbitration, so expect the Rockies to non-tender him next month. In the meantime they’ll keep him on the 40-man roster in the hopes of finding a taker via trade, but presumably there are no teams dumb enough to actually give up something of value in trade for the right to massively overpay Atkins.
Beyond his awful performance this season, Atkins is a career .252/.324/.411 away from Coors Field, turns 30 years old in a few weeks, and has always graded out poorly on defense at third base. And if for some crazy reason there’s still a team out there willing to pay a premium for that, they surely realize that the Rockies have no intention of actually keeping Atkins around long enough to go to arbitration.
Unless some team makes the mistake of trading for him before then, Atkins will be a free agent by December 12.

Clayton Kershaw struggles with control, walks six Marlins

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Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw entered Wednesday night’s start against the Marlins without having issued a walk in his previous three starts. In fact, his last walk came on April 3 when he issued a free pass to Paul Goldschmidt with the bases empty and two outs in the bottom of the first inning. All told, Kershaw was on a streak of 26 walk-less innings before he took the mound at home to take on the Marlins.

Kershaw started off Wednesday in character, striking out the side in the first inning. He issued a walk in a tough second inning, but escaped without allowing a run. Kershaw walked two more in the third and again danced out of danger. In the fourth, Kershaw walked Lewis Brinson to load the bases with no outs and — you guessed it — didn’t end up allowing a run. His errant control finally came back to bite him in the fifth when Kershaw issued back-to-back two-out walks, then served up a three-run home run to Miguel Rojas down the left field line. His night was done when he completed the inning. Five innings, three runs, five hits, six walks, seven strikeouts, 112 pitches.

The six walks Kershaw issued over five innings marked his first six-walk outing since April 7, 2010 when he issued six free passes to the Pirates in 4 2/3 innings. The only other time he walked as many was on August 3, 2009 against the Brewers in a four-plus inning outing. Kershaw hasn’t even walked five batters in an outing recently — the last time was September 23, 2012 against the Reds.