Bauer pranked by Goodyear police after Cubs' homer barrage

Indians starter keeps sense of humor despite rough outing

Bauer pranked by Goodyear police after Cubs' homer barrage

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Trevor Bauer kept his sense of humor after allowing back-to-back-to-back homers Tuesday, and it's a good thing he brought it with him Wednesday morning, too.

As the Indians started their morning meeting, members of the Goodyear Police Department were there to inform him that the balls hit by the Cubs' Jorge Soler, Javier Baez and Kris Bryant were found, and that they were returning them to him.

"We had a policeman come in and he said he was doing the traffic detail over on Estrella Parkway, and he said that roughly at 2:20 p.m., 2:21 and 2:22, three balls came in and disrupted traffic," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "He gave them back to Trevor. I thought that really was fun."

So did Bauer and his teammates, who Francona said were rolling with laughter once they caught the joke.

Bauer immediately tweeted out a playful response to the police prank, noting "Seems I'm responsible for 3 broken windows outside the stadium yesterday."

Jason Kipnis hopped online pretty quickly, too, using an emoji to show he laughed until he cried.

Bauer, heading into his second full season in the Majors and well-known as a deep thinker and social-media maven, had gotten the jump on the joke right after he left his outing Tuesday.

"You've got to let the hitters have some fun in Spring Training, too, right?" Bauer quipped.

All of the hijinks were a welcome sight for Francona, noting that the 24-year-old Bauer might not have handled the situation quite the same when he first arrived with the Indians in 2013, also Francona's first year with Cleveland.

"I don't know if we could have done that a couple of years ago," Francona said. "I think Trevor loved it. I hope we don't do that every five days, but that was good."

In fact, Francona was on the short list of possible perpetrators of Wednesday morning's prank.

"I probably had something to do with it. There's a rumor," Francona said.

John Schlegel is a national reporter for MLB.com. You can follow him on Twitter @JohnSchlegelMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.