The Los Angeles Dodgers are mourning the loss of franchise icon Maury Wills, who passed away last week at the age of 89 at his home in Sedona, Ariz.
Wills played 12 seasons with the Dodgers over two separate stints and remained connected to the organization after retiring by working as an instructor during Spring Training.
“I know he passed peacefully but I am going to have a heavy heart,” manager Dave Roberts said of Wills’ death. “Maury was very impactful to me personally and professionally. He’s going to be missed and I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye to him. This one is tough for me.
“He did a lot for the community, a lot for the Dodgers, and he was a friend, a father, a mentor and all of the above.”
Roberts wears No. 30 in honor of Wills and cherished the time he got to spend with him. “He just loved the game of baseball, loved working and loved the relationship with players,” Roberts recalled. “We spent a lot of time together. A lot of time together.
“He really showed me how to appreciate my craft and what it is to be a big leaguer. He just loved to teach, so I think a lot of where I get my excitement, my passion, my love for players, is from Maury.”
Roberts is grateful Wills had the opportunity to watch him grow as a player and manager. “In some strange way, I think I enriched his post-baseball career as far as watching every game that I played or manage,” Roberts began.
“I remember during games that I played here, he would come down from the suite and tell me I need to bunt or do this. I’d meet him at the end of the dugout. The coaches would say, ‘Hey, Maury is at the end of the dugout and wants to talk to you.’
“It just showed that he was in it with me. Even to this day, he would be there cheering for me and rooting for me.”
Dodgers wearing Maury Wills patch on jersey for remainder of 2022 season
The Dodgers announced they will wear a Wills patch on their jersey for the remainder of the 2022 regular season. The club will continue to wear the Vin Scully jersey patch as well.
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