The Washington Post
Dodgers’ Bauer set to miss rest of season
los angeles — Trevor Bauer, the Los Angeles Dodgers star who hasn’t pitched since June amid investigations into a woman’s sexual assault claims against him, will miss the rest of the season and the playoffs, an MLB official said Friday, bringing to an end a disastrous year for one of last offseason’s biggest free agent acquisitions.
The eighth and final extension of Bauer’s paid leave this season was the result of an agreement between baseball and the players’ union, the official said. With roughly three weeks left in the Dodgers’ schedule and MLB’S investigation of Bauer ongoing, there was no real possibility of Bauer returning to play this season.
Bauer’s representatives confirmed the agreement in a statement Friday, saying that it reflected “a measure of good faith” and “an effort to minimize any distraction to the Dodgers organization and his teammates.”
“He continues to cooperate with the MLB investigation and refute the baseless allegations against him,” read the statement from Jon Fetterolf and Rachel Luba, Bauer’s agents. Bauer, the reigning National SEE BAUER ON D6
League Cy Young Award winner, will finish 2021 with an 8-5 record and a 2.59 ERA in 17 starts. Bauer will earn $40 million this year, the highest single-season salary in baseball history.
When asked about Bauer before Friday night’s home game against the San Diego Padres, Dodgers Manager Dave Roberts said he had “no idea” whether the pitcher will ever again play for Los Angeles. He said Bauer’s season officially being declared over didn’t change anything for the Dodgers. “That’s more on the legal side,” Roberts said. “I think for us, just focusing on the baseball side, it hasn’t really affected the guys in the clubhouse.”
A spokesperson for the Major League Baseball Players Association declined to comment, citing the active MLB investigation.
On Aug. 27, the Pasadena (Calif.) Police Department presented the result of its monthslong investigation into the assault claims against Bauer to the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office for possible prosecution. On Friday, a representative for the D.A.’S office said there was no update on whether prosecutors will charge Bauer, after a California woman claimed that he choked her unconscious and then repeatedly punched her during a sexual encounter that left her hospitalized.
The California woman’s allegations came to light in late June, when she requested a temporary restraining order against Bauer in Los Angeles Superior Court. In a hearing over whether to grant the woman a more permanent protective order last month, Bauer’s attorneys argued that the woman encouraged him to engage in rough sex to ruin his career and win a financial settlement.
Bauer refused to take the stand during the hearing, citing his right not to incriminate himself, but his attorneys aggressively cross-examined his accuser. Judge Dianna Gould-saltman denied the woman’s petition, saying that she didn’t make her boundaries clear concerning rough sex and that her court filings were “materially misleading.”
The Post does not name alleged victims of domestic violence unless they ask to be identified.
The Post reported last month that an Ohio woman had also sought an order of protection against Bauer last year, when he was with the Cincinnati Reds. The Post obtained threatening text messages the Ohio woman said he sent her, including one reading: “I don’t feel like spending time in jail for killing someone. And that’s what would happen if I saw you again.” The woman also made similar allegations to those in Los Angeles, claiming that he choked and punched her during sex without her permission. Through his representatives, Bauer denied the woman’s claims and questioned the authenticity of the messages.
The decision to cease the piecemeal extensions ends Bauer’s professional limbo this year. But the saga that has enveloped the pitcher — and MLB — is now expected to become a protracted fight.
Even if Bauer is not criminally charged, MLB could levy a lengthy suspension against him based on its joint domestic violence and sexual assault policy with the players’ union. In the restraining order hearing, which was attended by an MLB attorney, Bauer’s attorneys blamed the California woman for encouraging rough sex but did not outright deny some of her claims, including that he punched her after choking her unconscious.
Gould-saltman found that the woman’s testimony, describing being rendered speechless by the force of his blows, did not form a basis for a restraining order. “She testified that she wasn’t able to speak part of that time, but [Bauer] couldn’t know that,” the judge said.
The joint policy’s definition of sexual assault includes the use of force “when the victim is asleep, incapacitated, unconscious or legally incapable of consent.”