Dodgers Team News

Dodgers News: Evan Phillips Likes the Way Dave Roberts Manages Bullpen

The Dodgers bullpen has been a true rollercoaster ride this season. They have been uncharacteristically unreliable for the majority of the year and it has cost the team some wins along the way.

Last season, the bullpen was a major strength for LA but this year, the team has had to win games in spite of them. However, over the last stretch of games before Wednesday’s dud in Colorado, the bullpen had started to look like what most people expected they would. Over the last 31 1/3 innings before Wednesday, the Dodgers pen had only been charged with one earned run.

Within all the issues, manager Dave Roberts has been forced to tinker with different personal grouping and navigate through it all. He has received much criticism for how he has handled it and no matter where you stand on the usage, you have to admit that he has done a good job keeping the unit together. He at least has one supporter, though, and that’s heavily relied upon reliever Evan Phillips. Phillips spoke about his manager and how he sees the job that Roberts has done so far.

“The way our management cares about the bullpen and manages the bullpen, it’s really commendable. I think it’s unique across the league. I think the Dodgers understand that they want us for the postseason, they want us for those last outs of the World Series and it’s not necessarily as valuable to burn us in May, June, July.”

Via AM 570 LA Sports Radio

Roberts has done the best he can with what he has had to work with. Everyone makes mistakes which is just the nature of the job and he should receive criticism for those. But it’s a good sign that his players understand the ultimate goal and speak highly about his job as the manager.

Since joining the team, Roberts has been a big players type of manager and sometimes it can lead to issues on the field with him trusting certain players too much. But Roberts sees the goal that this team is going towards and decisions aren’t solely his to make. Andrew Friedman and the front office give their input as well so all the blame shouldn’t be put onto Roberts. Phillips continued about the way the Dodgers use the relief pitchers.

“They’re trying to just manage it when they can. There will definitely be times when they have to ride us and we’ll be ready for that. But I think just the overall long term outlook is very beneficial for our bullpen.”

Even with all the issues that the bullpen has seen, LA only sits a few games back of the NL West division lead. This speaks volumes to the ballclub and the leadership, namely Roberts. He has his guys ready to go to battle every game and while they will drop games at times, they always get back up for the next one.

LA continues their quest towards winning another World Series title and the bullpen is going to need to continue stepping up if they want any chance of winning this season.

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Matt Levine

Matt earned a Master of Science degree in Sport Management from Louisiana State University in 2021. He was born and raised in the Los Angeles area, growing up a huge fan of the Dodgers and Lakers. Matt Kemp was his favorite Dodgers player growing up.

One Comment

  1. Good perspective. Fans, writers and video producing pundants tend to criticize Doc when his players fail to execute. Sometimes that’s on Roberts..most often it’s on the pitcher. All pitchers waiver from time to time, especially relievers.

    I can’t think of a year in recent history when the offense, relievers or starting pitching hasn’t gone through some noteworthy ups and downs. That’s usually ok over a long season. Not so much when it happens in the post-season.

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