LOS ANGELES — Former Cleveland Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer has found a new home in Los Angeles after a whirlwind of speculation of where the free agent might end up.
Bauer has agreed to a three-year deal with the Dodgers that has opt outs over his first two years with the team, according to ESPN’s Jeff Passan.
Trevor Bauer's three-year deal with the Dodgers is for $102 million guaranteed -- and for $40 million in 2021 and $45 million in 2022. He can opt out after each year, meaning he'll make $40M if he opts out this year, $85M if he does so after 2022 and $102M if he stays all three.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 5, 2021
An advocate for player branding and marketing, Bauer announced his decision with a video on YouTube.
Bauer was a free agent after spending the last two seasons on the Cincinnati reds following a trade with the Indians in 2019.
The pitcher's new deal with the Dodgers is worth $102 million guaranteed, according to Passan—$40 million in 2021 alone.
For reference, the Indians payroll this year is estimated to be $49.1 million, according to Cot's Baseball Contracts. That number is expected to increase with arbitration-eligible players, but you get the point.
Bauer will be the highest paid player, not only in 2021, but in MLB history when it comes to single-season salary.
Last year, Bauer had his career-best season, posting a 1.73 ERA with 100 strikeouts and just 17 walks. He earned the National League Cy Young Award last season, joining Indians ace Shane Bieber who earned the American League award.
Bauer returns home to southern California where he will join the star-studded rotation with Clayton Kershaw, Julio Urias, David Price and Walker Buehler. L.A.’s rotation now includes three Cy Young Award winners.
Friday’s news has prompted many to voice their opinions on the need for both a MLB salary cap to prevent big market teams such as the Dodgers, Red Sox and Yankees to run away with loaded rosters and monopolize talent—as well as the need for a salary floor to prevent the possibility of owners in smaller markets to coast by without spending.
I think Trevor Bauer getting paid as much as some teams' entire payrolls this season says a lot more about those teams than it does Bauer or the Dodgers.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 5, 2021
The Indians payroll being $36,555 million is EXACTLY why the MLB needs a salary FLOOR.— LB© (@Lintendo_64) February 5, 2021
MLB is broken, needs a salary cap/floor— Richard Nash (@RichNash8) February 5, 2021
This. This right here is the problem.— Michael Lev (@MichaelJLev) February 5, 2021
MLB needs a new salary system with a floor so everyone has to at least try. https://t.co/eYgJvL0PPr