What could be more fun than growing up as a baseball prodigy, being schlepped around to nationally known, highly regarded pitching tutors, ending up as the third overall pick in the draft and landing a four-year, $4.73 million contract before your 21st birthday?
But listening to Trevor Bauer, his life hasn't necessarily been one continuous joy ride.
Bauer was acquired by the Indians from the Arizona Diamondbacks last month in a multi-player deal that included trading away Shin-Soo Choo, arguably the Tribe's best player, who probably wasn't going to stick around after the season when he can become a free agent.
Until late last season, Bauer appeared to be as advertised: A kid with a platinum arm who has his own ideas about how to pitch, ideas based partly on the teachers he has encountered since he was an elementary school student.
The 350-foot long toss, throwing through a tube to keep pitches on the same plane — lots of stuff that a guy sitting in the bleachers or in the front office would look at with raised eyebrows.
There also have been clashes with teammates both in high school and at UCLA. Bauer has tried to address these problems.
He spent most of last season at Double-A and Triple-A, where he compiled a combined 12-2 record and 2.42 ERA, striking out 157 in 130? innings. Despite these glossy numbers, the Diamondbacks snubbed Bauer on Sept. 1, when rosters can be expanded to 40.
They did call him up later in the month, and he made four starts, posting a 1-2 record and 6.06 ERA.
Indians' Trevor Bauer a work in progress on and off the field
Akron Beacon Journal | Jan 10