Monday marked the 13-year anniversary of arguably the most memorable stolen base in MLB history. With the Boston Red Sox three outs from being swept by the New York Yankees in the 2004 American League Division Series, pinch-runner Dave Roberts flipped the series on its head.
While Roberts is revered throughout Los Angeles for his managerial success with the Dodgers, he’s said the famed stolen base off Yankees closer Mariano Rivera is still a topic of discussion to this day. While Roberts is cemented in Boston lore, the stolen base does not resonate with everyone.
“Yu Darvish, about two weeks ago, I guess was surfing the internet and there was an a-ha moment,” Roberts began to explain on the anniversary. “He ran across the stolen base and kind of put two and two together and didn’t realize that was his manager.
“So he proceeded to kind of awkwardly approach me about it and talked about my goatee and how I could steal a base. He just couldn’t believe that was his manager. So that was kind of funny.”
Roberts’ stolen base led to him scoring the tying run and the Red Sox eventually winning in extra innings. They rattled off three more victories to avoid being eliminated and went on to win the World Series.
While it was a pivotal moment, Roberts doesn’t reference it as a means of inspiration for the Dodgers. “I don’t bring it up ever,” he said. “But I think a message that I do bring up in the sense of just being prepared for a particular moment, and I was in 2004.
“Each guy on our ballclub, I think, can relate to that.”
Now the Dodgers are looking to avoid joining the Yankees as the only team in MLB history to blow a 3-0 series lead.