1. Clayton Kershaw finishes with a sub-3 ERA
Last season was the first time since Clayton Kershaw’s rookie season, where he threw 107 innings, that he finished with an ERA above three. Just let that sink in. For 10 consecutive seasons, Kershaw finished with a sub-3 ERA, three of those years finishing with a sub-2 ERA. His overall ERA in that span is 2.29.
And despite posting a number that is outrageously high for his own standards, Kershaw still finished 10th in the league in ERA and was an all-star. In fact, it looked like Kershaw was trending for yet another sub-3 ERA until some bad outings late in the year ballooned his ERA.
Kershaw had a 2.96 ERA heading into the month of September but after allowing four runs in six innings on September 20, his ERA climbed to 3.15, which was too high for him to get back down under 3.00.
His FIP last season was 3.86, which indicates that he did benefit from some good fielding behind him, pitching in a pitcher-friendly park and outright “luck”. However, while that is the stat that Kershaw naysayers love to flaunt, he still finished 26th in the league in FIP and it should not be an overly concerning number in the slightest.
Almost every single outing Kershaw would go 6-7 innings, allowing 2-3 runs for the Dodgers. Even in a “down year” he was one of the most consistent arms in the league. After going to driveline in the offseason and potentially working his velocity back up, Kershaw will get back under that threshold.