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KERSHAW, DODGERS AGREE TO $215M DEAL

Thursday, 16 January 2014 08:28 Published in Sports

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Clayton Kershaw agreed Wednesday to a $215 million, seven-year contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press, a deal that makes the two-time Cy Young Award winner baseball's first player with a $30 million average salary.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the agreement had not yet been announced.

Kershaw receives the most lucrative deal for a pitcher, breaking the mark of $180 million set by Justin Verlander last March for his seven-year contract with Detroit.

Kershaw would have been eligible for free agency after the upcoming season if the new deal hadn't been reached. He was eligible for salary arbitration, and those figures were set to be exchanged on Friday. He was coming off a two-year, $20 million deal that included $200,000 in bonuses in 2012, a $500,000 escalator to his 2013 base salary, and $300,000 in bonuses last year.

General manager Ned Colletti said last week that both sides had been negotiating.

"It's our desire to sign him here for a very long time," Colletti said.

The average salary of $30.7 million tops the previous high of $27.5 million, set by the New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez as part of a 10-year agreement from December 2007. While Roger Clemens had a contract with a listed salary of $28 million with the Yankees in 2007, he joined the team in June and actually made $17.4 million.

The Dodgers had baseball's second-highest payroll at the end of the regular season last fall - more than $236 million.

Kershaw's agreement, first reported by ESPN.com, is baseball's seventh of $200 million or more. Among current contracts, it trails only the agreements of Rodriguez, Cincinnati first baseman Joey Votto ($251.5 million over 12 years), Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols ($240 million over 10 years) and Seattle second baseman Robinson Cano ($240 million over 10 years).

A left-hander who turns 26 in March, Kershaw won NL Cy Young Awards in 2011 and 2013. He was 16-9 for the NL West champion Dodgers last year and led the league with 232 strikeouts, and his 1.83 ERA was the best in the major leagues since Pedro Martinez's 1.74 for Boston in 2000. He has led the NL in ERA in each of the last three years.

Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis tweeted: "Big winner today......me. I am blessed to catch best in the game for foreseeable future God willing. Congrats Kersh!"

Teammate Matt Kemp chimed in, tweeting, "Congrats 2 the best pitcher in baseball and great teammate (at)ClaytonKersh22 on his deal!"

Kershaw has been a powerful, yet low-key, presence on the team. In the offseason, the Dallas native has worked to build a charitable legacy alongside his wife, Ellen. The couple has made yearly trips to Africa, where his foundation that focuses on helping at-risk children built an orphanage.

The deal signifies further stability for a club that was in turmoil under former owner Frank McCourt, who sold the team to a group that includes Magic Johnson in 2012. The Dodgers signed manager Don Mattingly to a three-year deal last week and now have locked up their ace.

Last year, Kershaw pitched a career-high 259 innings between the regular season and the playoffs. The season ended on a sour note when he pitched a rare clunker in the Dodgers' 9-0 loss to St. Louis in the NL championship series that eliminated them.

Still up for discussion this winter is a new deal for Hanley Ramirez, who hit a team-leading .345 and played hurt during the NLCS. He has one year left on his contract.

---

AP Sports Writer Ronald Blum in New York contributed to this story.

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LIST OF 86TH ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARD NOMINATIONS

Thursday, 16 January 2014 08:20 Published in National News

Complete list of 86th Annual Academy Award nominations announced Thursday:

1. Best Picture: "American Hustle," ''Captain Phillips," ''Dallas Buyers Club," ''Gravity," ''Her," ''Nebraska," ''Philomena," ''12 Years a Slave," ''The Wolf of Wall Street."

2. Actor: Christian Bale, "American Hustle"; Bruce Dern, "Nebraska"; Leonardo DiCaprio, "The Wolf of Wall Street"; Chiwetel Ejiofor, "12 Years a Slave"; Matthew McConaughey, "Dallas Buyers Club."

3. Actress: Amy Adams, "American Hustle"; Cate Blanchett, "Blue Jasmine"; Sandra Bullock, "Gravity"; Judi Dench, "Philomena"; Meryl Streep, "August: Osage County."

4. Supporting Actor: Barkhad Abdi, "Captain Phillips"; Bradley Cooper, "American Hustle"; Michael Fassbender, "12 Years a Slave"; Jonah Hill, "The Wolf of Wall Street"; Jared Leto, "Dallas Buyers Club."

5. Supporting Actress: Sally Hawkins, "Blue Jasmine"; Jennifer Lawrence, "American Hustle"; Lupita Nyong'o, "12 Years a Slave"; Julia Roberts, "August: Osage County"; June Squibb, "Nebraska."

6. Directing: David O. Russell, "American Hustle"; Alfonso Cuaron, "Gravity"; Alexander Payne, "Nebraska"; Steve McQueen, "12 Years a Slave"; Martin Scorsese, "The Wolf of Wall Street."

7. Foreign Language Film: "The Broken Circle Breakdown," Belgium; "The Great Beauty," Italy; "The Hunt," Denmark; "The Missing Picture," Cambodia; "Omar," Palestine.

8. Adapted Screenplay: Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke, "Before Midnight"; Billy Ray, "Captain Phillips"; Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope, "Philomena"; John Ridley, "12 Years a Slave"; Terence Winter, "The Wolf of Wall Street."

9. Original Screenplay: Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell, "American Hustle"; Woody Allen, "Blue Jasmine"; Craig Borten & Melisa Wallack, "Dallas Buyers Club"; Spike Jonze, "Her"; Bob Nelson, "Nebraska."

10. Animated Feature Film: "The Croods"; "Despicable Me 2"; "Ernest & Celestine"; "Frozen"; "The Wind Rises."

11. Production Design: "American Hustle," ''Gravity," ''The Great Gatsby," ''Her," ''12 Years a Slave."

12. Cinematography: "The Grandmaster," ''Gravity," ''Inside Llewyn Davis," ''Nebraska," ''Prisoners."

13. Sound Mixing: "Captain Phillips," ''Gravity," ''The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug," ''Inside Llewyn Davis," ''Lone Survivor."

14. Sound Editing: "All Is Lost," ''Captain Phillips," ''Gravity," ''The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug," ''Lone Survivor."

15. Original Score: "The Book Thief," John Williams; "Gravity," Steven Price; "Her," William Butler and Owen Pallett; "Philomena," Alexandre Desplat; "Saving Mr. Banks," Thomas Newman.

16. Original Song: "Alone Yet Not Alone" from "Alone Yet Not Alone," Bruce Broughton and Dennis Spiegel; "Happy" from "Despicable Me 2," Pharrell Williams; "Let It Go" from "Frozen," Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez; "The Moon Song" from "Her," Karen O and Spike Jonze; "Ordinary Love" from "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom," Paul Hewson, Dave Evans, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen.

17. Costume: "American Hustle," ''The Grandmaster," ''The Great Gatsby," ''The Invisible Woman," ''12 Years a Slave."

18. Documentary Feature: "The Act of Killing," ''Cutie and the Boxer," ''Dirty Wars," ''The Square," ''20 Feet from Stardom."

19. Documentary (short subject): "CaveDigger," ''Facing Fear," ''Karama Has No Walls," ''The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life," ''Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall."

20. Film Editing: "American Hustle," ''Captain Phillips," ''Dallas Buyers Club," ''Gravity," ''12 Years a Slave."

21. Makeup and Hairstyling: "Dallas Buyers Club," ''Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa," ''The Lone Ranger."

22. Animated Short Film: "Feral," ''Get a Horse!," ''Mr. Hublot," ''Possessions", "Room on the Broom."

23. Live Action Short Film: "Aquel No Era Yo (That Wasn't Me)," ''Avant Que De Tout Perdre (Just before Losing Everything)," ''Helium," ''Pitaako Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?)," ''The Voorman Problem."

24. Visual Effects: "Gravity," ''The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug," ''Iron Man 3," ''The Lone Ranger," ''Star Trek Into Darkness."

Congressional delegation calls for Wood River Levee fix

Thursday, 16 January 2014 08:16 Published in Local News
ALTON, Ill. (AP) - Members of Illinois' congressional delegation want the Army Corps of Engineers to use some of the funding included in a spending bill to fix portions of a Mississippi River levee.
Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin, Republican Sen. Mark Kirk, and Republican congressmen Rodney Davis and John Shimkus made the request in a letter also signed by Democratic Rep. Bill Enyart.
In correspondence to Jo-Ellen Darcy, a top Army Corps official, the delegation asks that the corps make fixing the Wood River levee northeast of St. Louis near Alton a priority.
Calling the problem "critical," the lawmakers say the river barrier was negatively affected by a design deficiency in the construction of the Melvin Price Lock and Dam near Alton.
 

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