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Clayton Kershaw, Kenley Jansen, Dodgers & predicting arbitration

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Kershaw leads seven Dodgers eligible for salary arbitration this winter. Here is a prediction of their salaries from MLB Trade Rumors, plus other Dodgers links.

Stephen Dunn

Salary arbitration won't hit until January, but that doesn't mean we can't look ahead now. Clayton Kershaw is chief among the Dodgers eligible for arbitration this offseason, though most of the focus this winter will be on a potential contract extension for the Dodgers ace.

Matt Swartz over at MLB Trade Rumors has a model for predicting arbitration salaries, and on Tuesday he predicted 2014 figures for the seven eligible Dodgers this winter:

  • Kershaw: $18.2 million
  • Kenley Jansen: $4.8 million
  • A.J. Ellis: $3.2 million
  • Ronald Belisario: $2.3 million
  • Drew Butera: $700,000
  • Scott Elbert: $600,000
  • Mike Baxter: $500,000

Kershaw, about to win his second Cy Young Award, is a bit of a special case, and admittedly tough to predict. Swartz mentions Kershaw's projection would top the largest arbitration award, which is $15.5 million for Ryan Howard in 2011. But that ignores Tim Lincecum, who made $22 million in 2013 in the second year of a two-year contract that bought out his final two arbitration seasons.

Swartz thinks the Dodgers will non-tender Elbert, coming off Tommy John surgery, and Butera. I think the Dodgers will keep Butera for the same reason they traded for him on July 31. They have very little catching depth in the system, and I think they'll keep Butera around for relatively inexpensive backstop insurance heading into spring training in 2014.

The deadline to tender contracts is December 2. Players file for arbitration on Jan. 14, with figures exchanged on Jan. 17.

Here are some other Dodgers links for a Tuesday: