From "Bothered by Dodgers' mess, Ethier may be thinking of Red Sox" by Jon Heyman at SI.com:
"He's got his best buddy Dustin Pedroia telling him how great Boston is," one of those people said. "In Andre's mind, [the Dodgers situation] is embarrassing. And Boston has a different [vibe] right now." [snip]
"Andre's a really great guy, but he can be a little moody," one other person close to Ethier said. "Of all the guys this is going to affect, it's Andre. All the b.s. around the club will affect him more than other players. He's a prideful guy. He's lost respect for the organization.
"He loves L.A.," the person continued. "But he wants to play for a winner. And he wants to be associated with a team with positive things surrounding it. Matt Kemp's a guy who won't let it bother him, who'll just say I'll play my game. Andre isn't like that." [snip]
Ethier's performance doesn't appear to have been affected by his mood, but he is said to have an uneasy relationship with some Dodgers decisionmakers the past couple years. While Colletti wants to keep both players, it would appear their chances with Kemp might be better, even if his superb season raised the financial bar -- though the immediate concern has been to merely make payroll.
While the Dodgers talked to Ethier's people in the spring to try to persuade them about a long-term future with the Dodgers, Pedroia's flattering portrayal of the Red Sox and the city of Boston's reaction to the team has had a real impact on Ethier, according to people who know him. Red Sox right fielder J.D. Drew is almost surely in his last season in Boston, which could create a spot for Pedroia's friend. Ethier and Pedroia were teammates at Arizona State and are now regular winter workout partners in the Phoenix area.
One competing GM said about Ethier, "I could see him ending up in Boston. He'd be perfect in that park."
Given the choice of signing Kemp or Ethier to a long-term deal, I'd prefer Kemp. But who says it has to be a choice?