Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer was reinstated immediately after the suspension was lowered
Trevor Bauer’s two-year suspension from Major League Baseball was reduced Thursday, and now the Dodgers have two weeks to return him to their roster or release him.
An arbitrator reduced Power’s ban from 324 to 194 games and reinstated it immediately. He lost $37.5 million in salary from his $102 million contract with the Dodgers.
Had the suspension been fully upheld, Bauer would have lost $60 million. Even with the reduction, the suspension is the longest under baseball’s policy on sexual assault and domestic violence.
“While we believe a longer suspension is warranted, MLB will abide by the neutral arbitrator’s decision,” Major League Baseball said in a statement.
Bauer forfeited his salary for the last 144 games of the 2022 season and the first 50 games of the 2023 season. However, the arbitrator allows him to play in the first 50 games, in part because of his cooperation in repeatedly agreeing to investigative leave during which he missed the latter half of the 2021 season.
Under MLB rules, when a player is reinstated from the restricted list out of season, his team has 14 days to activate it. That gives the Dodgers until January 6 to decide, though the remaining $22.5 million of his salary is guaranteed whether they activate or release him.
The Dodgers cited uncertainty about their financial liability to Bauer as one reason for their relative lack of activity in adding players this winter. The Panel was not aware of any decision on appeal until shortly before the judgment was announced.
“We have just been informed of the arbitrator’s decision and will be commenting as soon as possible,” the Dodgers said in a statement.
Bauer’s first public reaction came in a two-sentence tweet promoting his video operation and then saying, “Can’t wait to see you all on the field soon!”
His last engagement with the Dodgers was on June 28, 2021, the day before a San Diego woman claimed a restraining order against him, alleging he sexually assaulted her. The league placed Bauer on investigative leave that week and suspended him this past April. Meanwhile, two other women have reported similar experiences with Bauer to The Washington Post. He denied any wrongdoing with the three women.
Bauer immediately appealed, and an arbitration hearing began similar to that of May. Sean Hawley, one of Bauer’s attorneys, told the Los Angeles court in August that the hearing would include “massive” evidence and could include up to 22 witnesses. The Post reported Thursday that two of Bauer’s three accusers were among the witnesses to testify.
On February 11, 2021, the Dodgers signed Bauer, a former UCLA star and at the time National League Cy Young Award winning defenseman, to a three-year, $102 million contract through the 2023 season. He made 17 appearances in 2021 and was on vacation or suspension in Last 243 regular season games for the Dodgers.
Of the 16 players suspended since the sexual assault and domestic violence policy took effect in 2015, he became the only player to file an appeal. He was also the only one with more than one publicly known accuser.
Neither Bauer nor Al-Douri mentioned the evidence Al-Douri presented in determining the suspension. When MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred imposed the suspension, Bauer said, “In the strongest possible terms, I deny any violation of the league’s domestic violence and sexual assault policy.”
By the time MLB suspended Power, the judge had dismissed the restraining order, and the Los Angeles District Attorney had declined to file criminal charges, saying the charges could not be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. The district attorney’s office said it investigated Bauer for “assault with means likely to cause great bodily harm, sodomy of a sleeping person, and domestic violence.”
Under a policy negotiated between the league and its players’ association, Manfred is allowed to suspend any player even if they are not charged with a crime.
Bauer could file suit in an effort to have the suspension overturned. Courts generally caution against interfering with collectively negotiated policies and procedures; Bauer will have to show that these policies and procedures are not being followed.
Bauer sued six parties for defamation, including a San Diego woman. She sued him again, and Bauer asked that her case be dismissed because the refusal of the restraining order would necessarily mean that the court had already ruled that no assault occurred.
U.S. District Judge James Selna denied Bauer’s request in November, ruling that the restraining order hearing determines whether the woman is liable to future harm from Bauer but “did not necessarily determine that Bauer did not hit or sexually assault.” [her]. “
Bauer and his representatives have long referred to the judge at the hearing for the restraining order saying the woman was “materially misleading” in her application for the order. Selna noted that the “materially misleading” comment did not refer to her account of the two sexual encounters but to the way it “overestimated the extent of Bauer’s connection”. [her] After the second meeting.
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