Since hiring Dave Roberts as manager, the Los Angeles Dodgers have extended their streak of National League West titles to six, reached the National League Championship Series three years in row and made back-to-back appearances in the World Series.
Yet, Roberts faced a bit of uncertainty throughout the 2018 season. His contract included a club option for 2019, which the Dodgers have not yet made a decision on. There was some belief that possibility hinged on the outcome of this season.
Despite the bit of unrest, Roberts and the Dodgers front office have expressed confidence a new long-term deal would be agreed upon. Roberts reiterated that stance during the World Series.
“My plan is to manage the Dodgers,” he answered when asked for his plans beyond 2018.
“I love the city. I love the organization. Everything that it’s about. And I love the high expectations. And that’s the way it should be. I can always get better. I do believe that we’re doing a lot of good things.
“Like I said three years ago, it’s a dream job for me, and making these men grow and be better men, teammates, mentors, role models in the community, that’s a win. That’s a big win. And obviously I understand my job is to ultimately lead us to a championship, and we haven’t accomplished that yet. But like I said, the whole body of work, I’m proud of what we’ve done.”
Roberts drew criticism throughout the season because of the team’s heavy reliance on platoons. Then his bullpen decisions, particularly against the Boston Red Sox, came under fire. While Roberts could sense the mounting frustration and criticism, he remained immune to it.
“I think it’s more of doing what you believe in and trusting it, and knowing that you have the player’s best interests in mind and the team. I think that there’s a lot of thoughts and opinions that people don’t have all the information, which is commonplace these days and cultivate opinions and give out there,” Roberts explained.
“So I think for me it’s noise and I really haven’t paid too much attention to it. I’ve had a conversation with our players, which for me is the most important thing, and which should be every day, the coaches. I really don’t have too much bandwidth to kind of really take in all the criticism. But it’s part of it. I haven’t really thought too much about it, I really haven’t.”