Former Cy Young Award winner Trevor Bauer has signed a contract to play for the Yokohama DeNA BayStars in Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball league, per a report Monday.
The Japan-based website Sanspo.com reported the deal is for one year and $4 million plus incentives.
Bauer, 32, was granted his unconditional release by the Los Angeles Dodgers on Jan. 12 after clearing waivers, making him a free agent. There apparently were no takers in the major leagues, however.
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He last pitched June 28, 2021, before allegations of sexual assault surfaced. He was placed on paid leave amid a Major League Baseball investigation, and he ultimately received a record suspension for violating the league’s domestic violence policy.
The Dodgers still owe Bauer the remaining $22.5 million on his contract.
Following the investigation, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred suspended Bauer for two full seasons last April over allegations made by a woman who claimed Bauer sexually assaulted her over two encounters. Los Angeles County prosecutors declined to file charges in the case.
On Dec. 22 a neutral arbitrator reinstated Bauer, reducing his punishment from 324 games to 194 — covering 144 games he was suspended for in 2022 and another 50 games of docked pay this coming season. Bauer was eligible to pitch immediately in 2023.
Bauer signed a three-year, $102 million contract with the Dodgers after winning the 2020 National League Cy Young Award with the Cincinnati Reds.
In his only season with the Dodgers, he finished 8-5 with a 2.59 ERA in 17 starts in 2021.
An All-Star in 2018, Bauer owns an 83-69 record with a 3.79 ERA in 222 career appearances (212 starts) with the Arizona Diamondbacks, then-Cleveland Indians, Reds and Dodgers.
According to Monday’s report, the BayStars made the offer to Bauer after a careful investigation and discussions.
–Field Level Media