Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
When the Los Angeles Dodgers signed Trevor Bauer to a three-year, $102 million contract, it was lauded as an aggressive move to repeat as World Series champions but one that came with risk due to the right-hander’s polarizing reputation.
Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman expressed confidence in the organization’s vetting process, but Bauer has not pitched for the team since last June due to sexual assault allegations.
Bauer was placed on administrative leave last July, and it periodically was extended through the 2021 World Series. He was put back on the restricted list prior to Spring Training beginning and it most recently that stay was pushed to April 22.
However, according to Bill Shaikin of the L.A. Times, Bauer is contemplating joining the Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on Sunday:
However, according to people familiar with the matter, Bauer is exploring whether there is in fact a binding agreement in place.
A spokesman for the league declined to comment, as did a spokesman for the players union.
There is a written agreement between the league and the union, according to a person familiar with the matter who spoke on the condition of anonymity. The person said the league considers that agreement binding and said Bauer would not be eligible to play until the leave expires.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts declined to comment when asked about the possibility of Bauer attempting to join the team.
If Bauer were to report, he still would not be permitted to play. In being placed on the restricted list, Bauer was removed from the Dodgers’ 40-man roster for the time being.
Bauer is said to be cooperating with the league during their investigation, but it’s unclear if he’s been interviewed by MLB officials. A recent petition to obtain a subpoena for his accuser’s cell phone records was denied by a judge.
Bauer was previously cleared by the Pasadena Police Department of potentially facing criminal charges, but under MLB’s joint domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse policy, commissioner Rob Manfred can still levy a suspension.
Will Bauer appeal suspension?
A prior report indicated MLB would not credit Bauer with games missed since last season if they decide to impose a suspension. That presumably would not be a decision the 31-year-old agrees with, and it’s believed he likely would appeal any punishment.
Bauer missed 81 games last season while on leave, then 12 more in the playoffs and now seven more in 2022.
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