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Clayton Kershaw back for another season

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PHOTO MARK J. TERRILL, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Clayton Kershaw

(Los Angeles) Clayton Kershaw will pitch again for the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2023 after agreeing to a one-season, $20 million contract.

For the second straight season, the Dodgers opted not to make a qualifying bid for the National League’s three-time Cy-Young Trophy winner. Instead, he was offered time to think about his future, and he again decided to maintain the status quo. Kershaw only played for the Dodgers in his illustrious 15-year Major League career.

The 34-year-old lefty went 12-3 with a 2.28 ERA in 22 starts last season. He struck out 137 batters and gave up 23 free passes.

Last April, he became the top scorer with the most strikeouts in California franchise history with 2,697. He reached 2,800 in his final start of the regular season on October 5 against the Colorado Rockies. Karshaw now points to 24and history ranking in this chapter in the Major Leagues, with 2,807.

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Kershaw is 197-87 with a career 2.48 ERA. He won his only World Series title in 2020, when the Dodgers defeated the Tampa Bay Rays in the season-long championship series interrupted by the coronavirus pandemic.

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The A’s are running out of time to find a new home

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PHOTO JEFF CHIU, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

The RingCentral Coliseum in Oakland

(Las Vegas) The Oakland Athletics spent years trying to find a new home while watching their San Francisco Bay Area neighbors – Giants, Warriors, 49ers and the Raiders – moving to state-of-the-art locations and now time is running out.

The A’s lease on RingCentral Coliseum expires after the 2024 season, and while they may have to extend that deal, the club and Major League Baseball have said the stadium no longer meets professional standards.

They’re trying to build a new stadium in Oakland or Las Vegas, but they’ve run into obstacles in both cities. The OA’s missed a key deadline in October to find common ground in Oakland, and it doesn’t look like they’ll get the public funding they seek in Las Vegas.

“I think the A’s should look at this two ways,” said Brendan Bussman, director of government affairs at Global Market Advisors, a Las Vegas firm. Obviously, they’re struggling to find a solution in Oakland, and it’s not for lack of effort. […] You have an owner who is willing to put in his own money, you have a club that wants to stay in this market and find a solution that works, but they keep running into obstacles.

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“Time to call: Oakland, do you want the A’s or not?” If the city won’t, where will the A’s get the best deal? Is it Vegas? In another place ? They will have to establish all this. »

What the A’s are thinking remains a mystery. The president, Dave Kaval, was very vocal early on in the process, explaining how the A’s studied both avenues at the same time. But for several months, it’s been radio silence on your side. Team spokeswoman Catherine Aker recently said the A’s would not comment at this time.

The A’s are trying to reach a deal with Oakland to build a $1 billion stadium that would be part of a $12 billion development deal.

Oakland’s new mayor, Sheng Thao, said reaching an agreement is important as long as it makes economic sense for the city. His predecessor, Libby Schaaf, led previous trades with the A’s. But after the city and club missed the October deadline, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred expressed doubts about a deal.

“First, the pace is not fast in Oakland,” Manfred said at the time. The situation is no longer excusable at the stadium. We have to do something, so the progress of this file worries me. »

Recent history in California justifies their concerns. SoFi Stadium in upstate San Francisco and Chase Center were built with private funds, while Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara was 90% funded by private funds.

“It snowballed: people across the country realized that these businesses could be done privately and generate a good return on investment,” said David Carter, professor of sports business management at the University of the South, California. Why inject public money then? »

That’s an issue in Las Vegas too, though the Raiders secured $750 million in public funds to build their stadium in 2016 and the Bills were pledged $850 million in March to build a new stadium in Buffalo.

Another Allegiant Stadium, where the Raiders now play, is unlikely in Nevada. The T-Mobile Arena, which opened in 2017, was privately funded. A planned arena south of the Strip also does not provide for public funds.

PHOTO DAVID BECKER, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas

Las Vegas, however, has some creative ways to find funding. The city’s AAA club stadium received $80 million in 2017 from the city’s Convention Commission for the right to put its name on the stadium: band public money.

Clark County Commissioner and convention commission board member Michael Naft, however, said the Raiders quickly identified Las Vegas as their first choice when a deal with Oakland became impossible.

“When the Raiders decided to come to Las Vegas, they had a clear plan,” said Naft. […] I haven’t seen that from the A’s, on any level. It’s not our job to beg them to settle down here. Our reputation speaks for itself. We put in the necessary effort and funds to build it. »

Nevada’s new governor, Joe Lombardo, has yet to comment on public funding. But no state politician has publicly asked for funds to be advanced in this case.

Manfred indicated in December that the MLB would waive A’s relocation fees if they moved to Las Vegas, which could save $1 billion.

Naft added that Allegiant Stadium filled a much greater need than hosting the NFL in Las Vegas. It allowed the city to attract major sporting events such as the Super Bowl and the Final Four, as well as concerts that did not stop there, such as Garth Brooks and Elton John.

He doesn’t believe a baseball stadium would have the same effect. Sports economist Victor Matheson agrees.

“I think there’s a real question mark about baseball interest in Las Vegas,” said Matheson, a professor at the College of Holy Cross in Massachusetts. It’s not like there’s a lack of entertainment options and it’s not clear how many people would travel there to see baseball. »

If the A’s really want to move there, Naft insists: they should say so clearly.

“You can’t put potential destinations in the competition. If you want to come here and be welcomed, you have to compromise.

If the A’s never do well with Oakland, they might consider Charlotte, North Carolina, Nashville, Tennessee and Portland, Oregon. But will they have time to explore these other options?

Oakland has demonstrated in the past that it doesn’t care too much about the departure of its sports franchises: in addition to the Raiders, the Warriors left for San Francisco.

Las Vegas, Matheson added, is not in a hopeless situation. He also urged caution: Las Vegas could go from the largest metropolitan market without a large professional team to one of the smallest with three.

“You can go from underrepresented to overrepresented in a very short time,” he said.

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Major League Baseball Is Investigating Pitcher Mike Clevinger

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PHOTO ORLANDO RAMIREZ, USA TODAY SPORTS ARCHIVES

Mike Clevinger, in 2020

(New York) Chicago White Sox pitcher Mike Clevinger is being investigated by Major League Baseball (MLB) following allegations of domestic violence.

Olivia Finestead made the allegations public in an Instagram post on Tuesday.

Clevinger, a 32-year right-handed veteran who played six seasons in the MLB, has agreed to terms on a $12 million, one-year free agent deal. The contract announcement was made on December 4th.

“MLB opened an investigation after learning of these allegations,” the team said in a press release. The White Sox were unaware of the allegations or investigation at the time the contract was signed. The club will not comment further until the MLB investigation is complete. »

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Sam Levinson, one of Clevinger’s agents, did not respond to a request for comment.

Finestead said she was the mother of one of Clevinger’s children and claimed he had two other children who were not hers. She shared a photo showing marks on her body, with accompanying words saying the injuries were “when he threw an iPad at me while I was pregnant” and that it “finally came out after strangling me”.

“Mike Clevinger,” she added. You really deserve hell. I have been silent for almost a year and you continue to secretly abuse your son. »

Finestead mentioned that the athlete spat on her baby.

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Scott Rolen inducted into the Hall of Fame

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AL BEHRMAN PHOTO, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Scott Rolen in 2010

(Cooperstown) Third baseman Scott Rolen was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Rolen, who played for the Philadelphia Phillies, St. Louis Cardinals, Cincinnati Reds and Toronto Blue Jays, won the favor of 76.3% of voters.

A player’s name must appear on at least 75% of ballots to be admitted to Cooperstown. Rolen’s name was chosen by 63.2% of voters last year.

Rolen played 17 seasons in Major League Baseball, maintaining offensive averages of .281/.364/.490. He hit out for 2,077 hits, including 517 doubles and 316 home runs, while driving in 1,287 runs and crossing home plate 1,211 times.

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National Rookie of the Year with the Phillies in 1997, Rolen won eight Gold Gloves and a Silver Stick, in addition to being named to the All-Star team seven times. He finished fourth in National MVP voting with the Cards in 2004.

Rolen thus becomes the 18and third baseman admitted to Cooperstown.

Todd Helton, first baseman for the Colorado Rockies, took a big leap towards a possible election, receiving 72.1% of the vote, up from 52% in 2022.

Billy Wagner also took a step towards the Temple, seeing his result go from 51% to 68.1%.

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