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Clayton Kershaw: World Series or bust for Dodgers

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With the highest payroll in Major League Baseball, the Los Angeles Dodgers have very high expectations for success. Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw understands what’s expected of his team, and told ESPN’s Colin Cowherd that it’s “World Series or bust” for Los Angeles this year.

“I think it was almost like that last year, too. Coming up short didn’t feel good, and now we have that experience of what it’s like to go deep and not win. Especially with the team we have now and the guys brought in from last year, we feel like it’s World Series or bust, for sure.”

Kershaw also spoke on the amount of characters and personalities the team has, and why it makes them a good baseball team.

“There are a ton of personalities, and that’s part of the reason why we’re good. So many different guys bring so much different stuff to the table. As long as you’re winning, all that stuff is quirky and that’s just the way it is. You start losing, all these superstars have too big of personalities and something’s got to change. It’s really just the perception of winning.”

Los Angeles came into the season with a payroll of $235 million, but currently sit approximately around $240 million after they acquired pitchers Roberto Hernandez and Kevin Correia.

Manager Don Mattingly backed up his ace’s words and said that “World Series or bust” is a realistic possibility.

“You have to say that as a player and I have to say that as a manager. If him and [Zack] Greinke and [Hyun-Jin] Ryu go down, I think, ‘World Series or bust,’ seems kind of silly, right? There are factors in there, but for me I think you have to look at it like that’s what you’re trying to accomplish, and I think that’s a realistic possibility.”

If the Dodgers plan on making a deep World Series run, they’ll like rely on Clayton Kershaw, who is not only a NL Cy Young candidate, but a NL MVP candidate as well. Kershaw can only pitch every fifth day in the regular season, but could get two starts in playoff series, depending on how the situations present themselves.

There’s no doubt that Kershaw is the best Dodger on the team, now he needs the rest of his team to follow his mindset and his production, and a World Series is definitely a realistic possibility.

Follow Mike Pendleton on Twitter @MP2310

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Photo credit: (Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

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