Matt Kemp had played 7 seasons with the Dodgers by the end of 2012. He was a great outfielder with speed, once stealing 40 bases in a season. He was a threatening hitter with power and was considered by many to be the best all-around player in baseball. So it was no surprise that in 2013 he signed an 8-year, $160 million contract. He was 29 years old.
From the beginning of the contract, Kemp’s on-the-field results started to drop. Injuries only allowed him to play in 73 games in 2013, and the following year his defense was so bad the Dodgers moved him out of the center field. He ended the year second in most errors for an outfielder.
The Dodgers managed to trade him to the Padres in 2015 where a physical exam revealed severe arthritis in both hips. The Padres did get some offensive production but Kemp’s fielding and base running were problematic. In 2016, Kemp could only play in 100 games. Starting in 2016, Kemp was involved in a series of trades that were “salary dumps” for both teams. He was on the Braves, Dodgers again for one year, and finally the Reds.
Immediately after signing the $160 Million Dollar Contract, Matt Kemp was never the 5-tool All-Star again. This contract was a true Swing Badder contract.