Another Trevor Bauer defamation suit is thrown out
Former Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer failed in another of his defamation cases Wednesday, when a New York judge dismissed a lawsuit he had filed against the website Deadspin and its managing editor.
Of the six defamation cases Bauer has filed, three have been dismissed. Only one has survived a challenge to dismiss, and lawyers for that defendant — baseball writer Molly Knight — have asked an appellate court to intervene.
In 2021, Bauer was accused of sexual assault by a San Diego woman, but her request for a restraining order was denied, and Bauer was not charged with a crime.
After an investigation that also considered the accounts of two other women, Major League Baseball suspended Bauer for violating its policy against sexual assault and domestic violence.
The Dodgers released Bauer in January but remain liable for his $22.5-million salary this year. He remains a free agent.
In the Deadspin suit, Bauer claimed he had been defamed by initial reports that the woman's skull had been fractured during a sexual encounter.
According to medical records filed as part of the woman's request for a restraining order, a doctor had observed symptoms consistent with a skull fracture. A CT scan ruled out a fracture, and the medical report included a diagnosis of "acute head injury."
In his ruling, U.S. District Judge Paul Crotty said Bauer was incorrect in suggesting the woman's possible skull fracture was "self-reported."
"These symptoms were not merely 'self-reported,' but based on a physician's initial examination and observation," Crotty wrote.
Crotty also said the Deadspin report did not substantially misrepresent the woman's allegations in her request for a restraining order — that is, she alleged sexual assault that caused her serious injuries.
"Whether those injuries included a skull fracture or simply 'significant head and facial trauma' and bruising does not change the nature of the accusations," Crotty wrote, "nor would it produce a different effect on the mind of the reader."
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.