The Dodgers knew what they were getting in Trevor Bauer when they signed him this offseason: a fiery presence on the mound with an even louder personality. The hope is that he will be able to back up that talk with his performance on the field, but this doesn’t mean that he won’t rub some people the wrong way in the process.
This leads us to the comments made by Seattle’s manager, Scott Servais.
Before we get to the comments made by the Mariners skipper, a bit of context. After pitching 4 strong innings against Seattle on Monday night, Trevor Bauer gave up 3 home runs in the 5th to end his night. After the game, he chalked it up to “just throwing pitches” and simply trying to build his pitch count.
It seems that Scott Servais heard what the Cy Young award winner had to say and decided to give some thoughts of his own.
Scott Servais with some unprompted thoughts about the comments from Trevor Bauer after his start last. pic.twitter.com/JQS5xjJ8CU
— Ryan Divish (@RyanDivish) March 24, 2021
I just wanted everyone to know [that] our guys weren’t trying the first four innings. We decided to try in the fifth inning last night, and it worked out. Our guys started trying. I know he had said that he wasn’t [trying] in the fifth, but our guys were trying in the fifth. We just didn’t take it seriously the first 3-4 innings.
At this point, the interviewer sarcastically asked Servais if his players had both eyes open during their at-bats, another jab at Bauer over his decision to throw with one eye closed during an earlier outing. And clearly, Scott still had some punches that he wanted to throw.
No, our guys were hitting with one eye shut the first four innings and trying to breathe through our eyelids cause we’re focusing on different things that will help us throughout the year.
I have to be honest here… I absolutely love this response from Scott Servais. It’s petty, witty, and absolutely brilliant. Trevor Bauer talks a big game, and he’s been able to back it up for the past year or so. But this also means that people like Servais are going to be gunning for him every chance they get.
The good news for the Dodgers is that he has looked like the ace pitcher they paid for during lengthy stretches this spring. But when his attention span has dipped, teams have been able to take advantage. His 4.08 ERA this training camp does not represent how good he has looked when it’s all clicking, but the Dodgers might be holding their collective breath this year hoping that their investment pays off.
Bauer’s seemingly had two goals since winning the Cy Young award last season: Get paid like the best pitcher in the game and receive the recognition that comes with it. He accomplished the first part when the Dodgers handed him a $102 million contract for the next three seasons. Now he has to back it up on the mound.