During the three weeks between Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer’s sexual encounters with a San Diego woman who accused him of sexual assault, she sent a text message to a friend.
In the message, according to a lawsuit Bauer filed Monday, the woman told the friend “they would be able to travel to Europe together in style once she was successful in her plot to destroy Mr. Bauer by tricking him into having rough and rougher sex with her.”
The allegation that the woman set up Bauer, lied about it repeatedly, provided “altered and filtered” photographs to the court and the media, and then destroyed relevant evidence is at the heart of the lawsuit, in which he claims the woman and one of her lawyers defamed him.
The suit also claims the woman filed a false police report and conducted a “malicious campaign” that resulted in Bauer “losing opportunities to earn additional income and exercise rights provided by his contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers” and “losing revenue and opportunities for revenue provided by his contracts and prospective contracts with sponsors and others.”
Bauer could learn as soon as this week whether Major League Baseball will suspend him — and, if so, for how long — for violating the league’s sexual assault policy. The Los Angeles County district attorney declined to charge Bauer with a crime after its investigation, but the league has conducted its own investigation and can suspend Bauer even if he has not been charged.
Bauer is in the second season of a three-year, $102-million contract with the Dodgers. He has been on paid investigative leave for eight months, although the prolonged investigation essentially terminated any chance Bauer could exercise his right to opt out the contract last fall. In the suit, Bauer provided no specifics about any loss of revenue or potential revenue beyond the opportunity to opt out.
The defamation suit is the third Bauer has filed within two months, after suing Deadspin and the Athletic. In the suit, Bauer claims attorney Fred Thiagarajah defamed him by telling the Washington Post that there was “no doubt that Mr. Bauer just brutalized the woman” and that the violent actions she alleged had happened with “100 percent certainty,” even after the district attorney declined to file charges and a judge had denied her request for a restraining order against Bauer.
Thiagarajah did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment late Monday. The attorneys who most recently represented the woman in court have said in legal filings that they no longer represent her.