Trevor Bauer is suing The Athletic and their former writer Molly Knight for defamation.
The Dodgers’ pitcher linked to the suit on his Twitter page on Tuesday.
In February, the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office announced that it would not be pressing charges over sexual assault allegations that the former Cy Young winner faced last year. Before that, a judge in the California Superior Court denied the accuser’s request for a restraining order.
Bauer was accused of punching and choking a woman unconscious during sex. The pitcher admitted to having rough sex with the accuser, but said it was consensual. During the case, Bauer’s attorney claimed that the pitcher had text from the accuser “involving requests to be ‘choked out’ and slapped in the face” and that “the woman spent the night, and left without incident, continuing to message Mr. Bauer with friendly and flirtatious banter.”
In the lawsuit against Knight and The Athletic, Bauer’s attorneys claim that Knight and The Athletic “defamed Mr. Bauer by creating and spreading the false narrative that Mr. Bauer fractured the Complainant’s skull.”
Bauer’s attorneys at Kinsella Weitzman Iser Kump Holley LLP and Zuckerman Spaeder LLP filed the suit Tuesday in the United States District Court Central District of California Western Division.
“There was no basis for that assertion because the Complainant’s own medical records — which The Athletic possessed — showed that she had no such fracture,” the suit continues. “Nonetheless, consistent with their prior and subsequent expressions of animus toward Mr. Bauer, The Athletic and Ms. Knight publicized that false attack, which was picked up and further disseminated to a larger audience by other media outlets and social media sites.”
The suit also cited tweets from Knight that referred to the accuser’s skull as “cracked” or “fractured.”
“Defendants acted with actual malice because they deliberately ignored the truth — which was evident in the medical records possessed by The Athletic — and because the Defendants’ defamatory statements were part of a campaign to harass Mr. Bauer, as evidenced by, among other actions, their prior and subsequent false and misleading statements about his conduct and character, their efforts to dissuade Major League Baseball teams from signing him, and their strident complaints about the Los Angeles Dodgers’ decision to add him to their team.”
This is Bauer’s second defamation suit related to this case. He also has sued the Deadspin website.
“We are aware of legal action taken by Trevor Bauer,” a spokesperson for The Athletic told The Post. “We’re confident in our reporting and plan to defend against the claim.”
Knight declined to comment for this story.
Earlier this month, MLB extended Bauer’s paid administrative leave, which he has been on since June 29, through April 16 as the league conducts an investigation into the allegations.