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Spring training not expected to start on time

Clayton Kershaw: “I’m continuing to prepare like we’re going to start on time. But each day, it seems like we’re getting further and further from that.”

Arizona Diamondbacks v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Clayton Kershaw was a guest on the Dan Patrick Show on Wednesday, the timing of Super Bowl week not a coincidence with his childhood friend Matthew Stafford playing for the Rams this Sunday.

Kershaw told Patrick he would be in attendance at SoFi Stadium at the Super Bowl.

What didn’t come up during the 11-minute interview was Kershaw’s free agency. The pitcher said he’s been kept up to date on MLB labor talks — or lack thereof — by Walker Buehler, the Dodgers representative in the players union. Kershaw said he was more active in the previous two CBA negotiations (2011, 2016) when he was the team’s player rep.

Under normal circumstances, pitchers and catchers would be reporting to major league spring training camps next week. But with MLB currently in a lockout, and with owners not actively negotiating, that is unlikely to happen on time.

Deesha Thosar of the New York Daily News reported that commissioner Rob Manfred in his address to media at the owners meetings in Orlando on Thursday is expected to formally announce that the start of spring training would be delayed.

“We have to continue to prepare like we’re going to play,” Kershaw told Patrick. “At this point it’s February 9th. There’s no way we’re going to be in spring training in a week. But I hope we’re in spring training soon, so we can get the season started on time.

“I’m continuing to prepare like we’re going to start on time. But each day, it seems like we’re getting further and further from that.”

As it stands now, the Dodgers’ first Cactus League game is scheduled for February 26, and opening day of the regular season is scheduled for March 31.