Andrew Friedman Credits Mark Walter For Dodgers Signing Trevor Bauer

Despite receiving interest from many clubs this offseason, the Trevor Bauer sweepstakes ultimately boiled down to a two-team race between the Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Mets.

The Mets not only were the perceived favorites to sign Bauer, but they reportedly thought at one point in the negotiations process they had reached an agreement with the right-hander.

That wasn’t the case, as Bauer reportedly turned down more money to join his hometown team. He signed a three-year contract with L.A. and will earn $40 million this season, making him the highest paid player in baseball.

“Coming into the offseason, Trevor was very front and center for us, so we had a few different phone calls and stayed in contact,” Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said.

“As we got into a couple weeks ago, things started to pick up and there were days I felt optimistic and certain days where I didn’t, but I think that’s the nature of most — if not all — negotiations. From our standpoint, I went to bed Thursday night (Feb. 4) really bummed.

“Thinking that it wasn’t going to work out and waking up Friday, continuing the process of having conversations, our ownership group — Mark Walter — put some wind behind the sail and said, ‘Let’s go get this done.’ Fortunately it wasn’t too late and we were able to come to this outcome.

“Couldn’t be more excited about it, but there were definitely times along the way where I wasn’t as optimistic. To be sitting here, obviously in this case I’ll take the result.”

Dodgers signing Bauer didn’t impact Justin Turner

After signing Bauer, the Dodgers were projected to blow well past the $210 million luxury tax threshold for the 2021 season. Some wondered whether that was going to impact the club’s ability to bring back Justin Turner.

“The simple answer is no,” Friedman said. “We’re committed to doing everything we can to put together the best roster that we can. Obviously it’s difficult for me to comment on a specific free agent, but I think it’s pretty well documented what we think of J.T. and what he’s meant to this organization. As far as how that’s going to play out, we will see.”

Shortly after, the Dodgers came to terms with Turner on a two-year contract that includes a team option for 2023.

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