Trevor Bauer picked the Dodgers, signing a reported three-year, $102 million contract that will pay him $85 million in the first two seasons, with opt-outs after both 2021 and 2022.
As you might imagine, that deal was the talk of baseball on Friday, aside from how it affects the Dodgers in relation to the competitive balance tax.
Blake Treinen was a guest Friday on MLB Network Radio, and praised the Dodgers organization as having a mix of “traditional baseball insight” and “new-age analytics,” and thought Bauer would be a good fit in Los Angeles.
“I’m pumped,” Treinen said. “The way he approaches the game, on a mental aspect, developing pitches aspect, because that fits perfectly with what the Dodgers are doing. I got to see a piece of that last year, which helped me to get back in some form to how I wanted to be as a pitcher.”
Links & notes
- Because Bauer declined a qualifying offer from Cincinnati, the Dodgers will forfeit their second-round pick in the 2021 draft, and have $500,000 deducted from their signing bonus pool for the 2022 international signing bonus period.
- The Dodgers weren’t desperate to sign Bauer, but they pounced on the opportunity, write Jorge Castillo and Jack Harris at the Los Angeles Times.
- Bill Plunkett at the Orange County Register pointed out that Bauer joins a Dodgers staff that in 2020 “ranked first in WHIP and second in ERA, opponent’s batting average and opponent’s OPS.”
- Pedro Moura at The Athletic cataloged Bauer’s on-field work and online bullying: “Evidently, the Dodgers decided that his pitching potential outweighs the risk that he will behave that way while in their organization.”
- Tim Brown at Yahoo Sports: “A common opinion in Bauer’s free agency was that teams would balance Bauer’s big fastball against Bauer’s big mouth, Bauer’s killer slider against Bauer’s commitment to chasing down social media trolls, Bauer’s tight curveball against Bauer’s loose regard for a world beyond that of his own making. That may or may not have been true.”
- Among the notes in Ken Rosenthal’s column at The Athletic: “Only 24 hours before, the Dodgers had thought they were out on Bauer, and that the Mets indeed were close to landing him.”
- Alden Gonzalez at ESPN offered his perception of the Dodgers with this move: “There’s us, and then there’s everybody else.”
- The Dodgers in Bauer have landed the best free agent pitcher on the market, and everything that comes with him, writes Michael Baumann at The Ringer.
- Mike Petriello at MLB.com wonders if Dodgers vs. Padres this year can be the best divisional race ever.
- Eric Sondheimer talked to two of Bauer’s formal prep coaches, both local. Hart High School’s Jim Ozella: “He has the best of both worlds, a great contract and playing with the defending World Champions. I’d say his personality fits perfectly in Los Angeles. He’s gregarious, outgoing, very intelligent, a hard-working guy. He’s a social media guy.”
- From UCLA coach John Savage, again per Sondheimer: “I think it’s great that he gets to come home and play for one of the most storied franchises in the history of the game. The UCLA baseball program is very excited for Trevor and his family and we look forward to watching him as a Dodger.”
- Bauer’s four-seam fastball was, by batted-ball metrics, a below average pitch in his career through 2019, but in 2020 it was one of the best pitches in baseball. Ben Clemens examines at FanGraphs.
- Bauer joins Roger Clemens 22 years ago as reigning Cy Young Award winners to join the reigning World Series winners, per Sarah Langs of MLB.com.
- Bauer tops the list of highest-paid MLB players in 2021, per Langs and Matt Kelly at MLB.com.
- Bill Plaschke at the LA Times is excited to the point of hyperbole about the Dodgers adding Bauer.