Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com passes along word from “a source familiar with the team’s thinking” that the Angels plan to decline their 2013 options on Dan Haren and Ervin Santana.
Haren’s option is for $15.5 million with a $3.5 million buyout and Santana’s option is for $13 million with a $1 million buyout.
And then, according to Gonzalez, the Angels will “focus their efforts on signing Zack Greinke to a multi-year extension.”
That may be easier said than done, of course, and Gonzalez speculates that Greinke’s price tag will be around $125 million for six years, but the Angels obviously aren’t short on cash and clearing Haren and Santana off the books would certainly leave their rotation wide open for a huge Greinke investment.
Haren has been a front-line starter in the past, but the 32-year-old has struggled through back problems this season while posting a 4.35 ERA. Santana’s overall ERA is 4.93 ERA and the Angels are no doubt getting sick of the 29-year-old’s inconsistency, but he does have a 2.88 ERA and .175 opponents’ batting average in nine starts since August 1.
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.