Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
Clayton Kershaw was among the several Los Angeles Dodgers who committed to participating in the 2023 World Baseball Classic, but on Friday the left-hander announced he would no longer pitch for Team USA.
“Super disappointing. We tried a lot of different things, all sides really tried to make it work. Nothing is wrong with me,” Kershaw said. “It just didn’t work out. I really wanted to do it.
“I really wanted to be a part of that group. Probably my last chance to get to do it, so I really wanted to do it. Just didn’t work out for a number of reasons. Disappointing, but that’s OK. I’ll be ready for the season and be ready to go.”
Kershaw declined to provide specifics behind his decision to back out of the tournament, but every indication is it stemmed from not being able to obtain insurance for the WBC.
According to Jorge Castillo of the L.A. Times, the Dodgers could have waived the insurance requirement for Kershaw, like the Detroit Tigers did with Miguel Cabrera, but declined to do so:
The Detroit Tigers made the unusual decision to waive Cabrera’s insurance requirement and assume the financial risk should Cabrera get hurt playing in the tournament, according to people with knowledge of the situation not authorized to speak publicly on the matter. The Dodgers did not do that for Kershaw.
Insurance coverage for the World Baseball Classic protects teams in the event a player suffers injury while participating. If an injury occurs during the WBC, insurance reimburses the team for time the player misses during the regular season.
Kershaw has a long history of back injuries and also dealt with left elbow trouble that ended his 2021 season.
He is not the first player who needed to back out from the WBC due to not being able to obtain insurance, but Kershaw arguably is the most accomplished.
Clayton Kershaw sought personal insurance
Among the various solutions Kershaw sought to be on the Team USA roster reportedly included obtaining his own personal insurance policy.
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