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Dodgers notes: Clayton Kershaw, Mookie Betts, Maury Wills

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Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks 9-1 during a baseball game at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. Photo by Keith Birmingham/MediaNews Group/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images

For Clayton Kershaw, the longest tenured player on the Dodgers roster, Saturday’s start against the San Francisco Giants might very well be his last regular season start at Dodger Stadium.

Kershaw has yet to either confirm nor deny any suspicion of him retiring after this season, however the end of the season has made the three time Cy Young Award winner ponder about continuing his professional career on the mound.

The 35-year-old has signed two consecutive one-year deals since the end of last year’s lockout, with the latter agreement coming after fears of him signing with an American League team (notably his hometown Texas Rangers).

Entering free agency this upcoming offseason, Kershaw has still yet to determine whether or not he’ll call it a career after this season. Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register writes about his decision once he hits free agency, noting how continuing his career has been an annual decision for the 35-year-old Kershaw:

“I say that every year,” he said this week. “You never know when you’re going to make the playoffs again. I say that every year, more as a reminder to myself. We get to do this a lot, but it doesn’t make it any less special.”


There are writers, such as Jim Bowden of The Athletic, who predict that Ronald Acuña Jr. will be named as this season’s National League MVP. There are also writers, such as Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, who believe that Mookie Betts is currently the favorite to win.

Rosenthal makes the case for Betts to win his second career MVP award, noting his defensive versatility (mainly manning shortstop for the first time in his career) and the lineup flexibility he brings whether the Dodgers are facing left-handed or right-handed pitching.

Joel Reuter of Bleacher Report lists the best position player from each team this season, naming Mookie Betts as the best position player from the Dodgers this season.

The Dodgers have just ten more regular season games to go before the postseason begins, and the team has a chance to claim the top seed in the National League over the Atlanta Braves. The Dodgers aren’t too concerned with their record at season’s end, as their top priority is strategizing a game plan for their rotation ahead of the NLDS, per Jack Harris of the Los Angeles Times:

“I think us getting to the postseason healthy, that trumps everything,” Roberts said.

Huston Mitchell of the Los Angeles Times names the late Maury Wills as the no. 11 greatest Dodger of all time in the latest edition of Dodgers Dugout.

Shohei Ohtani is soon to be the most prized free agent this offseason. With that being the case, Ohtani’s surgery on his torn UCL will prevent him from throwing a single pitch in the 2024 season.

Jon Heyman of the New York Post writes about the Dodgers being the current frontrunners to land Ohtani, and how the signing poses issues to an already depleted starting rotation.