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Trevor Bauer: ‘I don’t really miss a whole lot about Cleveland’

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Reds starter Trevor Bauer has struggled in four starts with the Reds since the Indians dealt him on July 31. Entering Sunday, the right-hander allowed 16 runs (15 earned) on 23 hits and eight walks with 30 strikeouts in 23 innings. That’s an ugly 5.87 ERA.

Nevertheless, Bauer says he’s happier in Cincinnati than he was in Cleveland. Via FOX Sports Ohio, Bauer said, “It was very easy coming in. Everyone did a really good job being accommodating, making it easy for me to make the transition. The information is great here, the coaching staff is great here, and overall I’m a lot happier here than I was. Sometimes you don’t realize how unhappy you are in a situation until you’re out of it. Just kind of the day-to-day life. I miss some of my teammates and stuff, but overall I don’t really miss a whole lot about Cleveland.”

In his final start with the Indians, Bauer struggled immensely against the lowly Royals. As manager Terry Francona came to the mound to remove him from the game, Bauer angrily hurled the baseball from the mound all the way over the fence in center field. Francona was not happy about it. Bauer was fined a couple days later, then the Indians traded him the next day.

Bauer also caused the Indians headaches because of his social media presence. In January, Bauer spent days publicly harassing a woman — a college senior named Nikki — in front of his 134,000 followers (now 175,000). Nikki received so much harassment from Bauer’s supporters that she was forced to delete her account. She wrote, “Sorry I don’t like being told to kill my self for 4 days straight.” Bauer issued a non-apology afterwards, saying, “I have been made aware that some of the interactions related to a specific Twitter exchange may have had a negative impact. That was not my intention. I will wield the responsibility of my public platform more responsibly in the future.” The incident was not a good look for Bauer or for the Indians.

In February, Bauer publicly criticized the way the Indians handled his arbitration hearing. He said, “They spent the last 10 minutes of the case trying a character assassination. I learned that giving to charity is a bad thing. I learned that agreeing with someone on a podcast just for the sake of argument that I was worth $10.5 million, and should be the definitive answer why I’m not worth $13 [million].” No matter what industry, employees publicly bad-mouthing the companies they work for is not looked upon fondly by employers.

Bauer, by the way, was crushed by the Pirates on Sunday afternoon. He lasted only three innings, serving up eight runs (seven earned) on eight hits and two walks with two strikeouts. His ERA as a Red is now up to 7.62.

The harrowing tale of the end of Bobby Jenks’ baseball career

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Bobby Jenks was a key part of the 2005 world champion White Sox. By 2010, his effectiveness as a closer fell off and he signed with the Boston Red Sox for the 2011 season. He’d pitch in only 19 games that year, suffer a back injury and would never pitch again.

In the year or so after that, we heard that Jenks was arrested for driving under the influence. And then we heard that his back surgery was botched, and his baseball career was over. Then, after years of silence, we learned last spring that Jenks won $5.1 million in a medical malpractice suit against the doctor who performed his surgery.

We did not, however, know all the details until Bobby Jenks wrote about them at the Players’ Tribune this morning. This is must-click link stuff, folks.

Jenks talks about how a seemingly innocuous pitch to Jorge Posada in an early-season Red Sox-Yankees game in 2011 was the last pitch he’d ever throw. He talks about the presumably simple surgery that would supposedly get him back on the field. And then the scary complications in which he almost died due to leaking spinal fluid resulting from the botched surgery. Then, after using painkillers to deal with back pain, Jenks’ fell into drug addiction, all of which culminated in him finding himself half-naked and crazed in a car that didn’t belong to him with police and rescue workers surrounding him.

Jenks got clean but his wife left him. And then he mounted a multi-year lawsuit during which he learned that the reason his back surgery was screwed up was because the surgeon was performing two surgeries at one time, which is an apparently common practice called “concurrent surgery,” that sounds like it totally should NOT be a common practice.

Yet Jenks has survived. He’s been sober for over seven years and he seems to be in a good place. But boy did he have to go through something harrowing to get there. Definitely take the time to read it.