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Dodgers Report: LA Hesitant in Free Agency as MLB Decision with Trevor Bauer Looms

The Dodgers have been quiet in free agency this offseason. Usually, that’s par for the course. The front office likes to operate in the shadows and off the radar of other clubs. MLB super agent Scott Boras likened the Dodgers to a submarine on Tuesday, operating silent but always being involved.

However, this offseason has felt different. Amongst fans, the silence is louder than usual. Maybe that’s because the team has openly told us that the 2023 payroll is fairly front of mind after exceeding the luxury tax threshold for two straight seasons. Plus, Andrew Friedman, Brandon Gomes, and Dave Roberts have all painted a picture of a youth movement coming next season.



But, MLB insider Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic shared that there might be more top of mind for the boys in blue. In a column on Wednesday, the insider revealed that the team is reluctant to engage on any top tier free agents because of the uncertainty surrounding estranged pitcher Trevor Bauer, who is appealing a 324 game suspension.

Here’s the excerpt from Rosenthal.

As the Dodgers wait to learn whether Major League Baseball will uphold Trevor Bauer’s two-year suspension for violating the league’s policy on sexual assault and domestic violence, club officials are uncertain how much back pay, if any, they will owe the pitcher.

Bauer stands to lose $60 million in salary. If his suspension is upheld, the Dodgers will not owe him anything. But if the suspension is overturned or reduced, the Dodgers as a third-time luxury-tax offender would be assessed penalties on top of his salary. As noted by the Los Angeles Times, the team’s total payout could exceed $100 million.

A decision on Bauer’s appeal could be coming soon. Late in November, Bill Shaikin of the LA Times said that “the arbitrator’s decision is expected no earlier than next month.”

If a decision does come before the new year, it could either make or break the team’s offseason planning. If the suspension is upheld, then we may see some free agent activity happen fairly quickly. And, if the suspension is reduced or lifted, then things get pretty tricky for the front office.

Bauer is under contract for the 2023 season after signing a three year deal ahead of the 2021 season. He has not appeared in a game since July of that year.

Clint Pasillas

Clint is the lead editor of Dodgers Nation, and a host and analyst on Dodgers Nation's own Blue Heaven podcast live stream. He's been writing, blogging, and podcasting Dodgers since about 2008. He was there for Nomar, Greg Maddux, and Blake DeWitt, and he'll be there for Walker Buehler, Alex Verdugo, Dustin May, and any Dodgers of the future. He's also a sandwich enthusiast, a consummate athlete, and a friend.

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13 Comments

  1. He should be reinstated as he was convicted of nothing. So so far just false accusations!

    1. I feel TB has been treated unfairly by MLB. On the next contract with MLBPA, the players need to change the rules about MLB, being able to suspend and investigate, even if there’s no charges filed.

    1. You Simp ,obviously, did not look at any of the evidence. That “Witch Hunt” mentality is exactly what is wrong with this country.

  2. He needs to pitch for the dodgers. He is the best available player on the mound. Has everyone forgot how good he is? Dodgers are just using any and every excuse possible to down load money and players this year as they do nothing. Their farm is not that good and neither will they be by not replacing all the talent they already have lost.

  3. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s blacklisted. Some say he’ll never pitch again. But if the Dodgers don’t want him send him down the freeway to Anaheim. They need and are looking for 1 more pitcher!

  4. Bauer should be allowed to play immediately! There are many convicted players that had a shorter ban! Dodgers should stand up for their pitcher and insert him as a starter right away! It is very unfortunate that a man can lose his job over an accusation, the Dodgers should be ashamed and they should rally behind their Cy Young award winning Pitcher Trevor Bauer!!!

  5. I think MLB F.O , is punishing the LA Dodgers on this TB issue , it has been a looming factor to thier current and future budget spending for now through two winter meetings now , MLB draging its feet on making the ruling announcement has been unfair to one of thier most prominent baseball teams under the MLB thumb ,
    Truth is ,the MLB commissioned body has had its sights on TB long before he signed to be a Dodger
    , If a civil Court finds that there is no criminal evidence to press charges, Anything beyond that that involves MLB is my opinion should be considered vendetive towards a individual, whether you find what he is into or not , if it’s not criminal it should be dropped by MLB, it then becomes the teams desreptincy if they want to retain his services or not on what it may do to the team balance

  6. Only 1 of 11 got this right. Even though he was not convicted of a crime. He admitted hitting her and choking her. What man does that even if she asked for it? That in itself breaks MLB rules against domestic violence! If the arbitrator finds for TB the Dodgers should eat the money and release him.

  7. The Dodgers never should have signed him in the first place. His suspension should stay as is and he should receive nothing. He has broken the policy and if other players have done similar acts of hitting and choking a woman; they should be suspended as well. This is NOT a legal matter but actions under the MLB policy guidelines and that should take precedant.

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