Originally written on Dodgers Rumors  |  Last updated 11/14/11


Ken Gurnick is reporting that the Dodgers are closing in on a franchise record eight-year, $160MM deal. The deal is expected to be made official after Kemp passes a physical. The deal is said to include a full no-trade clause, which could theoretically keep Kemp in Dodger blue until he is 34. That means the Dodgers are essentially buying out all of his prime years.

More importantly the Dodgers are about to turn a new leaf, signing a home grown talent for the first time in over a decade. Mike Piazza, this guy could've been the franchise player, but the Dodgers failed to make it happen by trading him to the Marlins. History repeated itself with Adrian Beltre who was lost to free agency.  Correct me if I am wrong but the last home grown guy the Dodgers kept around was Eric Karros. The former Dodger first baseman stayed around until 2002, but he was never what you can call a franchise player.

Alright so time to talk some numbers, after all $160MM is pretty hard to ignore. The Bison's new deal would tie for the seventh largest in MLB history, matching the deal Manny Ramirez signed with the Boston Red Sox in 2001. There is no denying that this deal is huge for the Dodgers in a number of ways, after all it's the first deal over five years Ned Colletti has given out to any player during his tenure as GM for the Dodgers. It's also the largest deal for the franchise since the deal given to Kevin Brown way back in 1998. Troy Tulowitzki recently agreed to a six-year, $119 million extension with the Rockies that brought Colorado’s total commitment to the shortstop to $157.5 million over 10 seasons, but it's hard to compare the two since Kemp was on the verge of being handed a bank breaking deal as a free agent.

Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira, CC Sabathia, Derek Jeter of the Yankees, and Joe Mauer of the Twins, are the only players in the MLB that hold a contract worth more than $160MM.

Congrats to Ned Colletti for getting the job done. I don't know how he did it yet, and I'm feeling a little uneasy about seeing the details of this deal. With the way the Dodgers have been doing business lately I'm concerned about how back-loaded heavy the deal may be.

I said it before and I will say it again, Colletti handled the top priority for the Dodgers this winter, period! I know most of you are shocked by the report, but honestly I'm not. This was perhaps the most important deal for the Dodgers in the last twenty years, and while I know there has been lot of skepticism with the Dodgers GM during his tenure, but Colletti most certainly got the job done here, and it's time to give credit where credit is due.
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