Trevor Bauer is a Cy Young Award winner and a free agent. He is the best pitcher on the market and in a normal world he would cash in big time, like Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg did last winter.
But these are not normal times, so we will see where the market goes – and, actually, Bauer is a bit unusual himself given his use of social media.
Bauer engages frequently on Twitter, which in itself is hardly unique and not a bad thing, either. But Bauer’s outspokenness during last summer’s labor negotiations, and his comments directed toward Commissioner Rob Manfred, are a little outside the norm for athletes on social media.
Is that a bad thing? Could it impact his free agency? Does it signal anything about his being a fit in New York?
All depends on who you ask.
I asked three former General Managers if they would be scared of Bauer’s social media presence if they were currently GM of the Yankees.
Former GM 1: “I think the world is changing and this is the new player, one who is active on social media. You just want somebody who won’t embarrass the organization. I’d (tell) the player, ‘You have to be aware of this. There’s nothing like New York and you have to be ready for it.’”
Former GM 2: “When things don’t go well and (the player) is that outspoken it becomes a problem (for the team). There’s not a guy like that in New York and there’s a reason for that. I wouldn’t even pursue him. It’s a non-starter for me.”
Former GM 3: “It doesn’t bother me all that much. As long as it’s not disparaging to the organization or his teammates and not embarrassing to the organization, I’m okay with it. He’s got a lot to say, but it’s a free country, man. It might be something that has to be managed, but overall does the player bring positivity with his play and his effort or not? Does the good outweigh the bad?”
I also asked three agents if Bauer’s social media presence would present a problem if they were negotiating with the Yankees.
Agent 1: “If he’s my client I’d tell him to dial it back, at least for now. The Yankees are so covetous of their brand. It does matter. I’m not even saying he’s a bad guy, I have no idea. I’m