After Trevor Bauer's suspension got reduced to allow him to pitch on Opening Day in 2023, the Los Angeles Dodgers had two weeks to decide whether or not they wanted to keep him on the roster. The Dodgers took every moment of those two weeks, announcing 14 days later (at the buzzer) that they designated Bauer for assignment.
This started another countdown clock for the Dodgers. Los Angeles then had seven days (Jan. 13) to trade Bauer before releasing him. While possible, a Bauer trade seemed very unlikely not only for PR reasons but because any interested teams could wait until he was outright waived by the team to acquire him for just $720K.
That being said, there has still been contact with the Dodgers regarding a Bauer trade. It might not be as unlikely as Dodgers fans previously thought it would be.
This obviously does not guarantee anything and any potential trade talks may have ended as quickly as the Minnesota Twins picked up the phone to make contact with the Dodgers. However, it does not change the fact that the Twins making contact in the first place is extremely surprising.
The Dodgers somehow working out a Trevor Bauer trade would be a blessing
Dodgers fans should not expect the team to trade Bauer, but if another team is desperate enough to make a deal happen then it would be massive for LA, who, in this instance, could save a few million (at this point, all another team is going to trade is cash). That can help the Dodgers avoid being up against the first luxury tax threshold. No team is going to trade for Bauer and take on his entire salary. The Dodgers would still have to pay most (if not all) of the $22.5 million that they owe him for 2023. But there's a world where another club sends them $2-3 million to make a deal happen.
It might even be worth trading a prospect with Bauer if another team is willing to take on a sizable portion of his contract. It won't be a premium prospect, but another team could snag someone in the Dodgers' top 30. Maybe that's why the Twins made contact.
Or perhaps they're trying to supplement the addition of Carlos Correa, who ditched his deal with the Mets to sign a six-year, $200 million deal in Minnesota. It wouldn't be viewed favorably, but a team like the Twins doesn't exactly have much to work with.