The Cincinnati Reds will be just fine without Trevor Bauer

Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Trevor Bauer (27) walks off the mound.
Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Trevor Bauer (27) walks off the mound. /
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The Cincinnati Reds and their fans finally got the news they had all been expecting. After a long, dramatic, drawn-out free agency, that had many wondering what he was doing, Trevor Bauer finally made it official by agreeing to terms on a three-year/$102M dollar deal.Bauer will join a stable full of studs that are arguably the best rotation in all of baseball.

Although I’m sad to see Bauer go, and I’m sad I won’t be able to watch that famous Conor McGregor strut down the mound in a Reds uniform anymore, I’m happy to see Bauer have the opportunity to go back home and go against the grain of what big-time MLB free agents have done in the past.

Former Reds pitcher Trevor Bauer is betting on himself.

Bauer is essentially betting on himself. While some could consider it foolish, I applaud his confidence. Most free agents are searching for the long-term deal that nets them the most guaranteed money possible, a safety net perhaps, but if Bauer can prove himself to be worthy, he may be investing in an even bigger payday down the road.

Luckily for the Reds, not only was Bauer’s landing spot outside the NL Central but to a team, the Reds won’t face nearly as often in the National League. I think most around the Reds organization had come to terms with the fact that Bauer would be wearing a different uniform in 2021, but the longer Bauer held out the more doubt was cast, and hope by Reds fans all over was never extinguished.

The Reds will be fine without Trevor Bauer.

The Cincinnati Reds will be just fine without Trevor Bauer. There I said it, and I believe it. Would I love to have had Bauer back? You bet, but it was just never going to happen and it shouldn’t have either.

It wasn’t feasible for Cincinnati to sink that much money into one player at this time. The Reds have much bigger questions to address like who is going to be the Reds everyday shortstop going forward? There are plenty of arms in the Reds rotation to get by.

Honestly, I think it would have been an awful move for the Reds to get anywhere near that kind of money to bring Bauer back in, and here is why. While winning the Cy Young Award was quite the feat, Bauer has never had a season like 2020. I’m a law of averages kind of guy, and what Bauer did last season was an anomaly against everything he had done in his career to that point.

The tale of the tape on Bauer’s stat sheet at FanGraphs is everything Reds fans need to see to support my argument. Bauer has been consistently around a 3.90 ERA, he strikes out a lot of guys but has never had a season like last year.

In 2019 Bauer’s ERA was at 4.49, which doesn’t scream to me commanding $40M per year. Had Bauer shown slight improvement in 2020, I would attribute it to Bauer improving and reaching his peak potential, but what the numbers don’t show is Bauer put those Cy Young-caliber numbers up against one of the easiest schedules in the entire National League.

The Los Angeles Dodgers are making Trevor Bauer the highest-paid player in all of baseball because of 11 starts, and 73 innings in 2020. Let that sink in for a minute. Trust me, the Reds were wise to stay out of the running for Bauer.

Now it makes sense for Los Angeles; they can afford to be wrong occasionally with that amount of money, but Cincinnati cannot afford to that. To put it into perspective, it would essentially be the equivalent of Cincinnati giving a huge contract to Aristides Aquino for that unprecedented run he had during the month of August in 2019.

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I will no doubt miss Bauer’s presence in Cincinnati. He’s intriguing personality and outlandish attitude were a breath of fresh air. I will miss the behind the scenes aspects that Bauer often offered up on his youtube channel, and his analytical mind. It just wasn’t meant to be, but Cincinnati thanks you and you’re always welcome back.