The Dodgers can afford to cut their losses with Trevor Bauer, and they may just do that if he wins his appeal to have his massive suspension reduced.
Note: The original version of this story has been edited to include more context.
Major League Baseball punished Trevor Bauer with a 324-game suspension after an investigation into violations of the league’s domestic violence policy. While Bauer is appealing the league’s decision, the Los Angeles Dodgers have apparently grown tired of the player’s antics.
The suspension involves an investigation into allegations of sexual assault from at least three women. Bauer suggests the suspension should be completely overturned due to the lack of criminal charges. He maintains innocence in the cases.
In addition to the current ban, Bauer spent 99 games last season on paid administrative leave after an investigation began into allegations of sexual abuse. Jon Heyman of the New York Post believes there is a shot the suspension could be reduced.
The current suspension as is would carry past the Dodgers deal with Bauer, meaning they won’t have to pay him. Without the suspension, Bauer has $60 million remaining on his massive $102 million deal with the Dodgers.
The Dodgers have remained silent on this matter, allowing the process and appeal to play out. Behind the scenes, according to Heyman, there appears to be little support for Bauer within the organization.
Heyman notes the Dodgers are a fan and public relations-conscious organization.
“Key decision-makers are apparently as turned off as MLB by the allegations against Bauer, who drew a record 324-game ban in his domestic abuse case,” Heyman said. ” There is believed to be little support inside the Dodgers clubhouse for Bauer. … Even beyond the playing field, with universally respected megastars Clayton Kershaw, Mookie Betts, and Freddie Freeman, the Dodgers have two iconic sports stars with impeccable reputations, Magic Johnson and Billie Jean King, in decision-making roles, and understand an organization is more than statistics.”
Those are not names you want against you.
Dodgers can afford to cut ties with Trevor Bauer when decision time comes
Regardless of how Bauer’s appeal turns out, the Dodgers could afford to release him, should they choose.
Bauer has not pitched in about 10 months and has not received pay since the ban went into place, and the allegations against him — plus the drawn-out process — would make any return to LA unlikely.
A hearing regarding Bauer’s appeal is expected to begin on May 23, according to The Athletic. As soon as an appeal decision is made, the Dodgers can make a decision on Bauer’s future with the club.
Even if the suspension is reduced, the attention Bauer draws isn’t something a team with a good reputation wants to be associated with them. Should his suspension be reduced, a fresh start elsewhere — either in MLB or another league — would appear far more likely than a Dodgers refresh.
With a $290 million payroll, the Dodgers can afford to cut ties with Bauer. And they should not be afraid to do so if they feel it’s in their best interest.