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Underpaid: Clayton Kershaw
Slash (W-L/ERA/K): 17-5/2.45/212
All-in-all, a forgettable season in Dodger-town will be salvaged when 23-year-old lefty Clayton Kershaw wins the NL Cy Young. With the Triple Crown fully in play, it would be nearly impossible to deny him the award.
Well-respected Sports Illustrated baseball writer Tom Verducci recently declared Clayton Kershaw to have the highest trade value in baseball. In short, he said that there is not one player in baseball (minor leagues included) that he would trade Kershaw for straight up.
That is high praise.
To think that Kershaw doubles as the best lefty in baseball and the least tradable player in the game all for just $500,000 is crazy.
Maybe the rest of the owners in baseball want Frank McCourt to keep the Dodgers. If he can't afford to keep his players, then they may get a chance to sign Kershaw. If not, the Dodgers project to have to luxury of throwing one of the most untouchable pitchers in the game out every five days for years to come.
Runner Up: Jeremy Hellickson
Overpaid: AJ Burnett/John Lackey
Salary (Burnett): $16,500,000
Slash (Burnett): 9-11/5.25/141
Salary (Lackey): $15,950,000
Slash (Lackey): 12-10/5.94/94
This is a cop-out. Sorry.
It was just too hard to pick which contract was more inexcusable.
At gunpoint, the most overpaid starter in baseball is probably John Lackey. While Lackey is paid less than Burnett he has, if possible, been less dominating.
The true deal breaker may be the fact that Burnett has a slight advantage in innings per start. Essentially, while they both kill their teams on a regular basis, Burnett tends to help the bullpen more than Lackey.
Burnett and Lackey play for two of the best teams in baseball. Both teams project to go far in the playoffs. Both players project to be left off of the postseason roster. Clearly, both players are absurdly overpaid.
Runner Up: Scott Kazmir (Honorable Mention: Johan Santana)