Dave Roberts says Dodgers can be ready to play in two weeks
Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts says his players can be ready to play again with only a few weeks notice.
Dave Roberts appeared on The Jim Rome Show on Tuesday morning to discuss how he is passing the time without baseball and how quickly he thinks the team can be ready to play if a season returns.
“After talking to positional players, pitchers, I think two weeks,” Roberts told Rome when asked to give a timeline for a potential second Spring Training. “I think once we get that soft opening or soft start for a Spring Training, then I think guys will have time to really start to ramp up, so then when we do get there, two weeks will suffice.”
Roberts noted that Major League Baseball will need to allow teams the latitude to expand their rosters, “by as many as five guys,” as well as consider creative ways to keep superstar players in the lineup while respecting their need to work up to full strength. Roberts suggested they consider the re-entry rule to allow pitchers like Clayton Kershaw to pitch, potentially take a break, and then return to the mound.
While waiting for the season to return, Roberts has been enjoying time with his college-aged kids who are now living under the same roof again. He said he watched the 2019 movie Knives Out, along with 9-1-1 Lone Star to support Dodgers fan Rob Lowe. Like many people stuck in their homes right now, he has also caught the Tiger King fever, “I’ve been getting into this Tiger show. Some of my players are watching [it].”
When asked about his reaction to the Mookie Betts trade, Roberts said, “It was a loud yell; it was a popping of champagne, because, man, it just doesn’t happen when guys in their prime [are traded like they were to a team that won 106 games last season].”
The former player mentioned how the biggest challenge for the team right now is the lack of routine that a normal season provides. He has been keeping in communication with the players, telling them to “try to keep your mind sharp, your body active.”
Roberts was impressed with Clayton Kershaw’s health this spring. He noted how the Cy Young award winner went to Driveline during the offseason, and as a result, he looked the best he has looked in a long time.