The Dodgers won 106 games in 2021, matching a franchise best set in 2019. Moreover, it was LA’s third 100-plus win season in five years. Dave Roberts has been the manager in each of those seasons, recording a .622 winning percentage in his six years at the helm for the Dodgers.
In short, Roberts is — by all accounts good — at his job. However, he’s entering the final year of a four-year extension signed after the 2018 season. In his business, they call that a lame duck manager.
At this week’s GM meetings in Carlsbad, CA, LA’s president of baseball operations, Andrew Friedman, discussed, among other things, the status of Dave Roberts. Friedman first reiterated something he said a few weeks ago at Dodger Stadium.
“He’s [Roberts] been a big part of what we have accomplished looking back, and I expect him to be a big part of what we accomplish looking forward.”
Then he bought himself time to handle more pressing matters before settling in to focus on Doc’s contract.
“For us, we have a lot of near-term things, with people who we aren’t sure are going to be here, that we’re working through. I’m sure it’s something we’ll have conversations on at some point.”
The Dodgers currently have 12 players from the 2021 team out on the open market as free agents. There are clear needs in the starting rotation that have to be addressed — something Friedman already started with the first free agent signing of the winter on Monday. Beyond starting pitching, LA needs to rebuild a bench and decide how high to go in the Corey Seager sweepstakes.
Dave Roberts is still under contract for 2022, so it’s not an immediate concern. Dave wants to stay here and the Dodgers want to keep him. Why rush?