Garrett Jones’ hearing against the Pirates was the final one of the arbitration season and his loss means that teams defeated players in five of the seven cases that went the distance.
MLB Trade Rumors notes that the seven hearings represent just five percent of the 142 total arbitration eligible players, as settling for one-year deals and in some cases agreeing to multi-year contracts was the preferred route for both sides, as usual.
Jones lost to the Pirates, Jose Veras lost to the Brewers, John Lannan lost to the Nationals, Jeff Niemann lost to the Rays, and Brad Bergesen lost to the Orioles, all for less than $3 million. Both player victories came against the Marlins, as Anibal Sanchez and Emilio Bonifacio beat Miami for $8 million and $2.2 million respectively.
Last offseason there were only three arbitration hearings and the players won two of them.
Clayton Kershaw had nothing left to prove when he exited the mound during his last Cactus League start on Friday. He finished camp with a 0.00 ERA, made all the more impressive after he extended his scoreless streak to 21 1/3 innings following 6 2/3 frames of one-hit ball against the Royals.
In six spring training starts this year, the Dodgers southpaw racked up 12 hits, four walks and 23 strikeouts. His velocity appeared to fluctuate between the high-80s and low-90s from start to start, but manager Dave Roberts told reporters that he expects Kershaw to get back up to the 93 m.p.h. range next week. Kershaw is tabbed for his eighth consecutive Opening Day start on Thursday.
The 30-year-old lefty is poised to enter his 11th season with the club in 2018. He went 18-4 in 27 starts last year and turned in a 2.31 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.4 SO/9 over 175 innings. He suffered his fair share of bumps and bruises along the way, including a lower back strain that required a five-week stay on the disabled list.
The Dodgers will open their season against the Giants on Thursday, March 29 at 7:08 PM ET. Given the sudden rash of injuries that hit the Giants’ rotation earlier today, Kershaw’s Opening Day opponent has not yet been announced.