As MLB’s administrative leave policy for Trevor Bauer continues to evolve and extend, reports are emerging that his Los Angeles Dodgers teammates are more than alright with the extended absence.
In fact, they don’t see any reason for it to end before the 2021 season wraps.
It’s been a long time since we’ve had any reason to view Bauer in the context of how his pitching might help the Dodgers compete during the stretch run, and rightly so; since Dave Roberts claimed the team’s ability to handle his next start was up to MLB and MLB alone, it’s been nearly a month of lawyers’ statements and court of public opinion conjecture.
Eventually, the high courts will render their verdict on Bauer’s position in the game of baseball, as well as society writ large.
For now, though, all of his once-and-former teammates must reckon with their comfort level with the exiled addition.
According to a report over the weekend, they’re almost uniformly ready to move on. As suspected when we learned about the mass unfollow spree on Instagram, Bauer’s Dodgers teammates don’t view him as a part of this roster moving forward.
Trevor Bauer’s Dodgers teammates want him gone.
According to Mike DiGiovanna’s LA Times exposé, any leeway that manager Dave Roberts fostered with Bauer when the reality of his transgressions first became public does not seem to have been absorbed by the rest of the locker room:
Bauer’s career is in jeopardy, and his stay with the Dodgers could be over, the sexual-assault allegations having turned a pitcher in his prime into a pariah in his own clubhouse, where no teammate has spoken publicly about him or come to his defense. Two people with knowledge of Dodgers clubhouse dynamics, who are unauthorized to speak publicly about the situation, said that a majority of players do not want Bauer back under any circumstances.
Even if he is not charged with a crime, Bauer could be facing a lengthy MLB suspension without pay. Since MLB implemented its domestic violence policy in the summer of 2015, 14 players — five of whom were placed on paid administrative leave — have been suspended for violating it, with suspensions ranging from 15 to 162 games.
Though it shouldn’t, it remains surprising to see this type of reaction from a group of players wholly committed to winning and defending their title.
So often, we’ve seen criminal transgressions be forgiven (or at least ignored) in the hopes of putting the best possible outfit on the field. This time, it appears morality holds the upper hand.
It’s fair to question why Bauer was added to this roster in the first place; though it would be difficult to predict this sequence of events taking place, he was a corrosive figure when he arrived and already felt like a last-minute, chemistry-interrupting addition to a championship ball club.
His lease on the 2021 season may very well have run out now, and no one he’s left behind seems to be eager to have him back.