Trevor Bauer ruling won’t impact MLB’s investigation for now

Trevor Bauer ruling wont impact MLBs investigation for now
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While a judge ruled Thursday that Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer will no longer be subject to a restraining order, the decision does not immediately affect Major League Baseball’s investigation into the sexual assault allegations made by a woman who had asked the court to keep the order in place.

MLB and police investigations of Bauer continue, with the focus not on whether Bauer should be restrained from contacting his accuser going forward, but on whether previous conduct alleged by the accuser merits criminal charges and/or an MLB suspension.

A woman was issued a temporary restraining order in June after she said two sexual encounters with Bauer at his Pasadena home turned into assault.

Bauer’s paid leave from the Dodgers, which began on July 2, expires Friday. If Bauer and the players’ union decline to agree to the league’s request to extend the leave, as the parties have done five times previously, then Manfred could decide to levy an unpaid suspension based on the evidence MLB has collected, plus what it has learned in the hearing.

But the case is still under investigation by Pasadena police and the possibility that Bauer still could be charged with a crime means that the league has not been able to interview him. Baseball’s domestic violence policy requires Bauer to submit to an interview with MLB as part of a league investigation. If Manfred were to levy a suspension now, he would do so without having heard from Bauer.

If Bauer and the union decline to extend the leave, Manfred also could leave possible discipline to the Dodgers, who could reinstate him, cut him and pay off the balance of his $102-million contract, or cut him and force him to file a grievance, in which an arbitrator would decide whether Bauer would get all or some of that money.

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