As Clayton Kershaw (35, Los Angeles Dodgers) weighs his options for next season, his decision will impact the organization’s starting rotation.

“How Kershaw spends this winter will play a big role in the Dodgers’ offseason,” Sports Illustrated (SI) reported on Sunday.

Last year, Kershaw turned down a multi-year deal offered by the Dodgers and signed a one-year, $20 million contract. It’s the second straight year he’s signed a one-year deal after the three-year, $93 million deal he signed after the 2018 season ended.

The reason why he continues to sign short-term contracts despite his stellar performance is because of his aging body.

Kershaw struggled with injuries again this year. Despite missing some time with a shoulder injury, he still managed to go 13-5 with a 2.46 ERA in 24 games, striking out 137 batters in 131⅔ innings.

But in the postseason, he broke it. A fall baseball nightmare ensued. In Game 1 of the National League Division Series (NLDS) against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Aug. 8, Kershaw pitched his worst game of the season, allowing six runs on six hits (one home run) and one walk in ⅓ inning (35 pitches).

As a result, Kershaw is considering retirement. He is currently in talks with his family.

Depending on his decision, the Dodgers’ offseason plans could change. For now, they’ll have to start bolstering their starting rotation.

They’ll also need to clear up some traffic. They’ll have to decide whether to keep Lance Lynn, whom they acquired in a trade, or part ways with him.

At the trade deadline in July, the Dodgers acquired Lin, a 136-win “veteran,” to bolster their starting rotation. It was a great move, but it didn’t work.

In a Dodger uniform, Lin went 7-2 with a 4.36 ERA in 64 innings over 11 starts. In the postseason, however, he made one start, giving up four runs on six hits and four home runs in 2⅔ innings in Game 3 of the Division Series against Arizona.

Lynn has an $18 million team option for next year. Now the Dodgers must decide whether to exercise it or not. This is predicated on Kershaw’s decision. 굿모닝토토 도메인

“If Kershaw is healthy, he’s a much better starter than Lynn. Kershaw will get $20 million to $25 million, and he’s a better value than Lynn at $18 million.”

“The Dodgers must have realized that they need starting pitching depth to survive the regular season and postseason. The Dodgers could exercise Lynn’s option and wait for Kershaw’s decision. They could also sign two top free agents, as Dodgers president Andrew Freeman recognizes the importance of great pitching.”