Dave Roberts Hired As Dodgers’ First Minority Manager
Dave Roberts couldn’t have it easy. Having migrated to San Diego from Japan at a young age, Roberts endured a difficult path to a successful career as an outfielder in Major League Baseball (MLB). Recently, Roberts survived a bout with cancer.Advertisement
After hanging his gloves, Roberts served as a bench coach and manager for San Diego Padres.
But his big break has finally arrived. The Los Angeles Dodgers have named Roberts as the franchise’s first-ever minority manager.
Dodgers revealed Monday its plans to introduce Roberts as a news conference on December 1. “’When I put on this uniform as a player, I understood the special responsibility to honor those that played before me as well as the amazing bond between the Dodgers and their fans,” the 43-year-old said in a statement. “I feel that I have now come full circle in my career and there is plenty of unfinished business left in LA,” said Roberts, who played for Dodgers between 2002 and 2004.
Roberts called the Dodgers “a groundbreaking franchise” for housing players such as Jackie Robinson, Roy Campanella, Sandy Koufax, Maury Wills, Fernando Valenzuela and Hideo Nomo.
Roberts represented five different teams during his nine-year playing career. But his stolen base in the ninth inning of Game 4 of the 2004 ALCS, simply referred to as “The Steal” was the highlight of his career. Roberts walked away from the game in 2008 after a one-year stint with the Giants.
Andrew Friedman, the Dodgers president of baseball operations, hailed Roberts as a people person. “His energy is infectious and he has the rare ability to make a genuine connection with every person he comes across,” said Friedman.
According to Friedman, Roberts can bring a World Series chip back to the city of Los Angeles. “He (Roberts) has developed strong leadership qualities and accumulated a breadth of baseball experience over his career as both a player and coach. He is a ‘baseball man’ and ‘people person’ in the truest sense of those words. We feel fully confident that he will effectively lead our team in pursuit of its ultimate goal – bringing a world championship back to the city of Los Angeles.”