Clayton Kershaw is healthy, but with the division title all but clinched for the Dodgers and his workload already at an MLB-high 223 innings they’ve decided to give him some extra time between starts.
Kershaw had been scheduled to pitch Wednesday against the Diamondbacks, but instead he’ll be pushed back until Saturday against the Padres.
Ken Gurnick of MLB.com reports that Stephen Fife will fill in for Kershaw, who’s been merely really good rather than incredible this month. He logged seven innings of three-run ball last time out against the Giants on Friday, throwing 106 pitches, and leads baseball with a 1.94 ERA overall.
The first truly big free agent signing of the offseason has gone down: the Chicago White Sox just announced that they have signed catcher Yasmani Grandal to a four-year, $73 million deal.
Grandal, 31, was the best catcher available in free agency. He is coming off a fine year with the Milwaukee Brewers, with whom he had to settle for a one-year pact in 2019. He hit .246/.380/.468 with 28 homers and 77 driven in. It was his fourth straight season with 20+ homers. While his catching has been criticized due to some high-profile mistakes in the postseason, the two-time All-Star once again proved himself to be one of the best pitch-framers in the game if not the best. Between the bat and the glove he has a claim to being one of the best all-around catchers in baseball.
The signing leaves open the question of what happens to James McCann, who was himself an All-Star this year. It’s not that hard a question, of course, as Grandal is a far superior catcher to McCann in every respect. The Sox could make McCann a backup. Alternatively, they could try to trade him to fill other holes on the roster.
The White Sox finished 72-89 in 2019 but are showing signs of coming out of rebuilding mode and into contention mode. This signing pushes them a big step into that direction.