It is getting to the end of the year, and with the dearth of Dodgers transactions, there is not a lot to gossip about. Still the Trevor Bauer saga continues to stymy the Dodgers plans, or does it?
I continue reading how the Dodgers are going to simply release Bauer. I guess it is the poor PR that they expect as a backlash. Does anyone really believe that the Dodgers will not lead MLB in attendance in 2023? Heck, the race may be far more competitive that more fans will flock to the stadium in September. No, the PR will hit certain sites, but even Trevor Bauer cannot hurt the Dodgers brand.
These people (journalists/pundits) who claim to know that the Dodgers are going to release Bauer are the same ones who told us that the Dodgers were in on every high priced FA. From Jacob deGrom to Justin Verlander, to the four elite SS, and to Carlos Rodón, LAD was linked to all of them.
Now the know it alls are saying that Bauer will be released by January 6. I am not buying it. The Dodgers have never let their intentions out to the press. They are not going to start now. Does that mean that I think Bauer will be retained and not released? No. I have no idea. I do not have an ear to the front office, and AF has not called me to let me know so I can be the first out here to report what is going on. I wish he would 😂.
By not releasing Bauer, that gives the team additional time to trade him. Why the rush?
I understand that the LA Times’ Bill Shaikin is not sold on Bauer being released either. In his opinion, the longer this saga plays out, the likelier that Bauer will be retained. Maybe, maybe not.
I also am not buying many of the players have told management they do not want Bauer in the clubhouse. I think if you took a poll of the players before the Dodgers signed Bauer, there would be more than a handful who said they did not want him at that time. Since when does the front office run to the players for an evaluation of a player’s transaction?
— MLB Deadline News (@MLBDeadlineNews) December 30, 2022
Yes, I know this is different. But perhaps a response to those players might be that if they had not shat the bed in the NLDS after winning 111 games, maybe there would be more of a consideration. But that team as it was constructed could not get it done. Suit up and play to win regardless as to who is on the team. You are paid millions to compete and that includes the playoffs.
I also understand that the Dodgers asked MLB if they could review some of the evidence that was compiled in the MLB investigation to help with their decision making process, and were told NO.
If the goal is to get rid of Bauer, and they cannot trade him, then perhaps there should be a conversation by LAD execs with Bauer something like…”We cannot trust that you are built up enough to be starting pitcher this year, so we are putting you in the bullpen. If you do not like that option, perhaps you should opt out. If you are agreeable to the bullpen, then we can move to that goal. Make it clear that he will not be a stretched like a starter during ST.
Kasten/AF/BG will do what is ultimately best for the Dodgers to win a championship. I have no idea what the urgency to release Bauer is. If they do not do it by January 6, they can certainly do it later in the Spring or Summer. If you are going to release him, do it when it is in their best advantage, not 6 weeks before pitchers and catchers are due to report.
For me, I do not understand the urgency to release Bauer at this time. I do not buy into the PR hiccup, because it will be forgotten before the season starts. I do not buy he would be a distraction in the clubhouse. He may not be liked, but we know that a 100% harmonious clubhouse means squat when it comes to winning championships. Who gives the Dodgers the better chance to win…Hanser Alberto or Trevor Bauer? We know who the better teammate would be, but he did not make the playoffs roster.
AF is a smart man. If there was a way to get Bauer to opt out, he can do so. But to simply release him so the Dodgers can pay him $22MM for the Padres/Mets/Braves/Phillies to pick him up for free does not help the Dodgers in 2023. Paying him $10MM to go away also gives those teams the same chance to sign him, but the $12MM savings will go a long way to help the team either this winter or at the trade deadline.
BTW, guilt or innocence of the MLB charges makes no difference to me. Bauer was not criminally charged, however Bauer was slapped with the longest suspension in MLB history for domestic abuse. I have been clear that I do not like Bauer, and did not want him on the team when AF signed him. I do not mind the antics coming off the mound, just as I do not mind the bat flips. It had nothing to do with his social media exploits. He is a narcissistic reprobate who cares not a twit about his team. Only about how it affects him.
AF, do what is best for the Dodgers chances to win the WS. If it includes Trevor Bauer so be it. There is no question that he gives the Dodgers a deeper rotation. If not, do your best to trade him. If he cannot be traded, then release him before Game 1, not January 6.