Last week contract talks between Adam Wainwright and the Cardinals were called “casual” and “ongoing,” but yesterday general manager John Mozeliak indicated that the two sides aren’t close on a long-term extension.
Wainwright is entering the final season of his contract with a salary of $12 million and Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports that the 31-year-old right-hander may be willing to continue negotiating during the season if necessary.
“I think both parties have a similar goal,” Mozeliak said. “In time, we’ll see if we can work towards it.”
Given his age and the fact that Wainwright is one season removed from Tommy John elbow surgery the length of a potential extension could be tricky, as the Cardinals would no doubt like to limit a deal to two or three years.
Dodgers southpaw Clayton Kershaw is nearing his return to the mound, according to club manager Dave Roberts. Both Kershaw (left biceps tendinitis) and fellow lefty Rich Hill (left middle finger blister) are scheduled to toss simulated games on Saturday; depending on the outcome, Roberts says Kershaw could forgo a minor league assignment and slot back into the rotation by Thursday.
Kershaw, 30, was diagnosed with biceps tendinitis as the team closed out their Mexico Series at the start of the month. He has not made a start in several weeks, but was finally able to resume throwing on Sunday and managed to get through two successful bullpen sessions. Though Dodgers’ ace hasn’t been completely injury-free over his 11-year career in the majors, this is the first significant issue he’s had with his pitching arm so far. The team is expected to take every precaution with the lefty, and will likely limit him to just four innings during Saturday’s simulated game.
Prior to his injury, Kershaw was working on another dominant run with the club, sporting a 2.86 ERA, 2.0 BB/9 and 9.8 SO/9 through his first 44 innings of the season. While Kershaw, Hill and left-handed starter Hyun-Jin Ryu served their respective terms on the disabled list this month, the Dodgers utilized a combination of relievers Ross Stripling and Brock Stewart, both of whom impressed during their limited time in the rotation.