Tyler Clippard has been one of the best relievers in baseball since joining the Nationals in 2009, but FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal hears that he is “likely” to be traded.
Why would they do such a thing? Well, Rosenthal cites Clippard’s rising salary and the Nationals’ depth with right-handed relievers. According to MLB Trade Rumors, the 29-year-old right-hander is projected to make $9.3 million next season in his final year of arbitration. That sounds like a lot for a reliever, but consider that Andrew Miller just signed a four-year, $36 million contract with the Yankees. He should attract plenty of interest.
Clippard owns a 2.64 ERA (150 ERA+) since 2009 and has made at least 70 appearances in each of the past five seasons.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts confirmed it in March and he confirmed it again on Tuesday: Clayton Kershaw will start on Opening Day, Jorge Castillo of The Los Angeles Times reports.
The Dodgers are one of four teams that will open the 60-game regular season schedule on July 23; everyone else begins play on the 24th. With a 10 PM ET start, the Dodgers will host the Giants at Dodger Stadium.
Johnny Cueto will likely pitch opposite Kershaw for the Giants. Cueto was named the Giants’ Opening Day starter on March 11, before the league shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic. Manager Gabe Kapler hasn’t yet officially named an Opening Day starter for the makeshift season.
Kershaw, 32, made the Opening Day start eight consecutive times for the Dodgers from 2011-18. Hyun-Jin Ryu, now a Blue Jay, pitched on Opening Day last season for the Dodgers. Last year, Kershaw logged 178 1/3 innings over 28 starts and one relief appearance, his highest innings total since 2015. He went 16-5 with a 3.03 ERA, 189 strikeouts, and 41 walks.