After guiding the LA Dodgers to consecutive Word Series berths, the Dodgers rewarded manager Dave Roberts with a four-year contract extension through the end of the 2022 season.
In the last three seasons, the Dodgers are 287-200 under Roberts with three NL West titles.
Welcome Back, Doc
The LA Dodgers officially announced they were picking up an option on manager Dave “Doc” Roberts and extending his contract for four more seasons. Roberts will be the skipper through 2022.
Andrew Friedman, Dodger President of Baseball Operations said via press release, “Keeping Doc as our leader on the field was a top priority this offseason and now that we’ve accomplished that we’re excited to collectively shift all of our focus to doing all we can to bring a World Championship to our passionate fans.”
Since Roberts arrived three years ago, he amassed the second-best record in MLB. Only the Houston Astros won more games that the Roberts and the Dodgers with a 287-200 clip. At age 43, Roberts became the second-youngest manager for the Dodgers. He was previously the first base coach from the San Diego Padres.
Roberts won the NL West in his first three seasons as the Dodgers manager and also added two NL pennants.
“When I was hired to lead this team three years ago,” said Roberts in a statement. “I said at the time that managing the Dodgers is truly the opportunity of a lifetime and I feel the exact same way today. We’ve worked hard to develop a team and culture that will put us in position to win the World Series every season, but we still have yet to achieve our ultimate goal and that is what drives me each day.”
The Dodgers brought back Roberts even though he drew huge criticism from fans for sketchy and questionable managerial decisions in the World Series. All the Roberts’ haters will have to suck it up because he’s the skipper until 2022.
As a journeyman outfield, Dave Roberts players for five teams in his ten-year career. Roberts had a three-year stint with the Dodgers from 2000 to 2003. He only hit a career .266, but he stole 243 bases.
Roberts’ biggest steal occurred in a postseason game for the Red Sox in October 2004. They were still trying to end the Curse of Babe Ruth and had yet to win the World Series.
In the ALCS Game 4 against their hated-rival, the New York Yankees, the Red Sox trailed 3-0 in the series. Roberts came into the game as a pinch runner for Kevin Millar in the bottom of the ninth. With the Sox down a run, Roberts stole second base off Mariano Rivera, despite numerous pick-off attempts. Roberts put himself in scoring position and promptly scored the tying run on an RBI-single, which put the game into extra innings. The Sox would go on to win Game 4 and stave off elimination. They won the next three games to advance to the World Series. The Sox would win the World Series and finally end the Curse of the Bambino.
First Minority Manager
Roberts is the son of an African-American father and a Japanese-American mother. He became the first minority skipper for the LA Dodgers.
The Brooklyn Dodgers were the first team to cross the color line with Jackie Robinson. In 1947, Robinson became the first black player to appear in the major leagues after being segregated for nearly 50 years.
Roberts has tied to Southern California, particularly West LA. Roberts played baseball at UCLA, where he first joined the team as a walk-on. He got drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the 19994 draft.
Back-to-Back in Chavez Ravine
Roberts guided the Dodgers to consecutive berths in the World Series. They lost in seven games in 2017 to the Houston Astros.
This year, the Dodgers lost in five games to the Boston Red Sox. Their only win was the 18-inning marathon that will go down as one of the most memorable games in World Series history.
History is against the Dodgers in one sense. Only one team has ever lost in consecutive World Series and then returned a third year to win it all. The 1923 Yankees won the Series after losing in 1921 and 1922.
According to the South Point Casino and Sports Book in Las Vegas, the Dodgers are 6-1 favorites to win the World Series next year.