Let me start by saying that I love Dave Roberts. The way that he has turned around the clubhouse culture and managed so many high profile personalities is nothing short of extraordinary.
Having said that, is it possible that the 2020 season could decide his fate? It’s very much a possibility, and there is more than one reason why. Before we get into Roberts, let’s go ahead and look at why the Dodgers should be the team to beat this coming season.
Best Dodgers team in recent history
For starters, the current roster is absolutely loaded. Offensively, they have the firepower to hang with any AL lineup on any given day. A lineup that features two of the top 5 players in baseball will almost always have the upper hand, and the Dodgers have just that in Mookie Betts and Cody Bellinger.
The pitching staff isn’t half bad either. Sure, they lost Rich Hill, Kenta Maeda, and Hyun Jin Ryu this past offseason. That is 60% of their starting rotation which they needed to replace, which should lead to a major fall-off in production. But this is the Dodgers we’re talking about. Not only do they have starting pitching depth for days, but they also brought in extra arms just in case. David Price, Alex Wood, and Julio Urias are the 3 starters expected to fill the back 3 rotation spots, and they are more than capable pitchers. Oh, and did I mention our top two starters are Walker Beuhler and Clayton Kershaw? Yup, this team is loaded.
They’ve Been There Before
No matter how good a team may be, experience is still an important factor. Luckily, the Dodgers will have both this coming year.
Not only has the club been in the Postseason for 7 consecutive seasons, but they’ve also played in two World Series during this run. On top of that, they brought in two proven winners in Price and Betts to add to the culture. The Dodgers have done everything except win 4 games in the World Series, which gives them a leg up on most teams headed into this season. They understand the grind that it takes to play through October and will know how to pace themselves to be at their best come playoff time.
They’ll Have the 4th Easiest Schedule
So the Dodgers have one of their best rosters ever and they have the experience to benefit from the 60-game season. What else could possibly go their way? Oh yeah, they also have one of the easiest schedules in baseball. Fangraphs has released the relative strength of schedules based on MLB’s regional play proposal, and the Dodgers seem to have the 4th easiest schedule in all of baseball. I don’t think there’s much more to say other than they should clearly dominate this upcoming season.
So what does this mean for Roberts?
If Dave Roberts fails to get the Dodgers over the hump with everything they have going for them, it might mean the end of his run here in LA. Now to be clear, this is not something that I personally want to see happen, and neither do a majority of the fans.
We asked fans on Twitter if the season outcome should decide his fate, and while the answers are definitely split, a majority seem to believe he deserves another chance regardless of record.
The Dodgers are looking absolutely STACKED this year! With such a loaded roster this season, do you think the Dodgers’ outcome should decide Dave Roberts’ fate as manager?
— LA Sports Report (@LA_SportsReport) June 27, 2020
Will Andrew Friedman and company feel the same way the fans do? Let’s hope that the boys win it all this year and we never have to find out.