He was there when Clayton Kershaw pitched seven excellent innings.
He was there when the Dodgers celebrated Jackie Robinson Day.
Trevor Bauer wasn’t there in particular person, however he didn’t must be. Nearly a yr after sexual assault allegations towards him initially surfaced, Bauer stays out of sight however positively not out of thoughts. His presence is in all places.
That was the case once more Sunday, when a 9-1 victory over the Reds was overshadowed by hypothesis of whether or not Bauer would return to Dodger Stadium.
If this have been another participant, there would have been completely no likelihood of him attempting to stroll right into a locker room through which he didn’t know whether or not he could be welcome.
With Bauer, the Dodgers couldn’t make certain.
He strives to painting himself as an iconoclast and craves consideration. He operates a YouTube channel with greater than 400,000 subscribers.
Ultimately, there have been no reported Bauer sightings, however that just about didn’t matter. Whether he meant to take action or not, Bauer nonetheless managed to shift the main target from the staff to himself.
And he’ll proceed to take action, with The Times’ Bill Shaikin reporting that Bauer remains to be wanting into the settlement between the commissioner’s workplace and gamers union to increase his administrative go away by means of Friday.
Bauer is exploring whether or not the settlement is binding, Shaikin reported, citing individuals aware of the state of affairs who weren’t licensed to talk about it publicly.
On the floor, Bauer’s questioning of the settlement appears to be like like a ploy to power the slow-moving hand of MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred. Bauer is ineligible to play whereas on go away, but when the settlement isn’t binding, Manfred would theoretically run the danger of Bauer reporting to work if he doesn’t instantly droop him.
Bauer maintains he didn’t sexually assault the San Diego lady who accused him of doing so throughout two encounters. The Los Angeles County district legal professional mentioned he couldn’t show any costs past an affordable doubt, however Manfred may droop him with out assembly that customary. Bauer can enchantment any suspension.
The deadlock has created a nightmare for the Dodgers. Whatever occurred between Bauer and the girl, a corporation that champions itself as an agent for optimistic social change is now connected to a participant with a historical past of allegations that he harassed ladies, mocked transgender individuals and unfold racist conspiracy theories.
The Dodgers knew of his popularity once they signed him. They couldn’t have identified he could be accused of sexual assault, however they knew they have been buying a participant who contradicted their self-proclaimed values.
The state of affairs hasn’t negatively affected the staff. The Dodgers reached the National League Championship Series final season and have a 7-2 document this yr.
“I think that we’re just focused on winning a baseball game,” supervisor Dave Roberts mentioned.
But the picture the Dodgers developed over generations is being diminished one headline at a time.
By now, Bauer has made clear he gained’t disappear quietly. If something, he has proven an inclination to create as a lot noise as potential, submitting lawsuits towards media entities and remaining lively on social media.
He additionally seems disinterested in pursuing probably the most expedient path again to the sector, which might virtually definitely contain him negotiating a suspension with MLB. But accepting a suspension would imply he must conform to not enchantment Manfred’s discovering that he violated league coverage, and he has maintained he did nothing improper.
By dragging out the method, he isn’t solely tainting the Dodgers’ historical past but in addition clouding the staff’s current.
In the early innings of Kershaw’s pitch-count-thwarted excellent recreation, phrase surfaced of the now-disputed settlement to increase Bauer’s paid go away.
Two days later, the Dodgers have been slipping into their No. 42 jerseys and getting ready to satisfy Jackie Robinson’s son when information broke that Bauer may problem the settlement and present up at Dodger Stadium on Sunday.
On the Sunday in query, Freddie Freeman impressed a pair extra stadium-wide chants. Andrew Heaney appeared like a brand new pitcher, placing out 11 in six scoreless innings. Bolstered by a seven-run fourth inning that displayed their offensive potential, the Dodgers gained their sixth consecutive recreation.
And in some way, the story of the day concerned a participant who wasn’t on the sector.
This story initially appeared in Los Angeles Times.