Monday, November 23, 2015

Welcome Back to the Blue, Dave Roberts!

I can hardly contain my excitement.  This is fantastic news.  The old codger inside of me that still values Dodger-family, Dodger-loyalty and Dodger-lineage loves this move.

Dave Roberts, who might not have come up through the Dodger ranks but is still a Dodger through and through, will be the 10th manager in LA Dodgers history and the 28th overall skipper in the franchises history.  WooHoo!

Best yet, he comes back to Los Angeles having worked in a front office and as a coach on the Major League level.  Roberts also has the energy, the communication skills and apparently the backing of several Dodger veterans.  Via a tweet from Bob Nightengale:
Per a Dodger press release:
“We’re extremely excited to bring Dave Roberts on board as the next manager of the Dodgers,” said Dodger President, Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman. “We could not have been more impressed with him through this process. His energy is infectious and he has the rare ability to make a genuine connection with every person he comes across. He has developed strong leadership qualities and accumulated a breadth of baseball experience over his career as both a player and coach. He is a "baseball man" and "people person" in the truest sense of those words. We feel fully confident that he will effectively lead our team in pursuit of its ultimate goal -- bringing a world championship back to the city of Los Angeles."

Roberts, 43, served as the bench coach for the San Diego Padres the last two seasons and prior to that, he was a special assistant for San Diego’s front office in 2010 and the club’s first base coach from 2011-13. He filled in as manager for one game this past season, following the departure of Bud Black. Roberts, who is of African-American and Japanese descent, becomes the Dodgers’ first-ever minority manager.

“It’s hard for me to put into words what it means to be named manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers,” said Roberts. “This is truly the opportunity of a lifetime. The Dodgers are the ground-breaking franchise of Jackie Robinson, Roy Campanella, Sandy Koufax, Maury Wills, Fernando Valenzuela and Hideo Nomo. When I put on this uniform as a player, I understood the special responsibility to honor those that played before me as well as the amazing bond between the Dodgers and their fans. I feel that I have now come full circle in my career and there is plenty of unfinished business left in L.A.”
In celebration of his hiring I made the above fantasy card of him.  The photograph was taken by Dodger photographer Jill Weisleder/LA Dodgers 2004 and I used the 1972 Topps Baseball card design.

Below are his career statistics, via Baseball-Reference:

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