Los Angeles Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman can relate to fans’ frustration and disappointment with falling short in the postseason, but he differs from most in how to interpret the team getting eliminated from the National League Division Series.
Amid external pressure for the Dodgers to part with Dave Roberts, Friedman confirmed the he will return for an eighth season as manager. Friedman added criticism of Roberts’ decision-making in the NLDS has been unfair in his estimation, and he shifted blame — or responsibility — across the board.
“I think it’s human nature to want to point the finger at someone, and I feel like this was an organizational failure in the postseason,” Friedman said. “I feel like our regular season goal, we accomplished.
“We put ourselves in the very best position you can to go out and win 11 games in October. We didn’t come close to doing that. I think there are fairly clear answers as to why, and others aren’t as clear. But I think that passion is awesome. Love it.
“But I feel like all of us are incredibly disappointed, and at least the way my mind works, is taking this moment, learning what we can from what happened, and doing everything we can to avoid this going forward.
“Now, what can we do to hopefully put ourselves in the best position to play in October next year and then once we’re able to accomplish that, how do we put ourselves in the best position to be the hottest team during that stretch? I don’t know the answer to that, but we’ll definitely spend time trying to figure it out.”
The Dodgers set a new franchise record with 111 wins and Roberts became the first NL manager in MLB history to lead a team to the playoffs in each of his first seven seasons at the helm.
Ultimately, the Dodgers were tripped up in October by cold bats.
“We went through four-game stretches all year where we we were the ’27 Yankees with runners in scoring position. We went through four-game stretches this year where we were on the other end of that,” Friedman noted.
“Game 1, I felt like for three innings we were great. Those last remaining innings, we were not. Now, we hung on and won the game. In Game 2, I actually feel like we had really good at-bats.
“We had really good at-bats against Yu Darvish and their ‘pen, and had a lot of different opportunities and some hard-hit balls that found guys that didn’t fall. I didn’t feel that way in Games 3 and 4.
“So how much of that is baseball and the natural course? And how much of it is other things? You can kind of go through all of it, and we will spend some time on it. Just trying to find any levers or anything we can do to help put us in a better position next year.”
Andrew Friedman mum on Dodgers free agency
The Dodgers have 10 players due to become free agents the morning after the 2022 World Series concludes, and the group could increase to 14 dependent on team option decisions. However, Friedman and his front office were not yet at the stage of evaluating free agency.
“All personnel things for us, we’re going to spend more time on,” he said. “We’re going to take time, meet as a group and really get into those things.”
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