After mutually agreeing to part ways with Don Mattingly on Oct. 22, the Los Angeles Dodgers hired rookie manager Dave Roberts.
He inherits a team that’s made three consecutive trips to the postseason, but never advanced to the World Series under Mattingly — who was 8-11 in postseason play.
Roberts, 43, was formally introduced on Tuesday, and it didn’t take long for the new skipper to set goals. “I think hopes and dreams, everyone in a Dodgers uniform or speaking to the fan base, it’s to win a world championship,” he said.
“I think that’s first and foremost, and I think we’re all excited about that and that’s the goal. There’s obviously a lot of work that goes toward that. It’s a process that we’re all going to commit to as an organization.”
Roberts added that he hasn’t yet felt any pressure in taking over a job where expectations are high. “I definitely don’t feel any pressure, but that might change. I really don’t succumb to pressure. I think people should have expectations and goals,” he said.
“We talk about it every day. You should be goal-oriented, and the goal is to be great. That’s the goal. But, there’s 29 other teams talking bout being great, and there’s a process that you’ve got to commit to. Who’s going to commit to it? That’s the difference-maker.”
With the manager decision now made, the Dodgers main focus in the offseason will shift to re-signing Zack Greinke, strengthening the bullpen and filling out Roberts’ staff.
A couple of those positions have reportedly been filled as it appears former New York Mets bench coach Bob Geren will become the Dodgers’ bench coach, former Arizona Diamondbacks hitting coach Turner Ward will take over the same role with the Dodgers, and Gabe Kapler will also reportedly be joining Roberts in the dugout.