Dodgers legend Maury Wills wore quantity 30 when he used to be surroundings information and converting the recreation of baseball as a base-stealing system in the Sixties. It’s no accident that Los Angeles supervisor Dave Roberts wore quantity 30 when he performed for L.A. and wears it once more in his present position.
Roberts used to be a very good base-stealer himself, averaging just about 25 in keeping with 12 months in his 10-12 months occupation. The defining second of Roberts’ enjoying occupation got here in the 2004 ALCS, when he stole 2d base and scored the tying run in Game 4 to assist his Red Sox win the recreation and sooner or later come all the long ago from a three-0 deficit in the sequence to beat the Yankees. The Red Sox, of direction, went on to sweep the Cardinals in the World Series for his or her first identify in 86 years.
Wills, who gave up the ghost on Monday evening at the age of 89, used to be a mentor to Roberts all through his enjoying days with the Dodgers and in his time as L.A. supervisor. Before the first recreation of Tuesday’s doubleheader at Dodger Stadium, Roberts sat down with the media and mentioned his dating with the 1962 NL MVP and 3-time World Series champion.
“I am going to have a heavy heart. Maury was very impactful to me – personally, professionally. He’s going to be missed.
“This one is going to be tough for me. He did a lot for the community and a lot for the Dodgers. He was a friend, a father, a mentor – all of the above for me. So this is a tough one for me.
“He just loved the game of baseball, loved working and loved the relationship with players. We spent a lot of time together. A lot of time. He just kind of showed me to appreciate my craft, showed me how to be a big-leaguer. He just loved to teach. I think a lot of where I get my excitement, my passion, my love for players is from Maury.
“I remember during games when I played here he would come down from the suite and tell me I needed to bunt or I needed to do this. I’d meet him at the end of the dugout. The coach would say, ‘Hey, Maury is at the end of the dugout. He wants to talk to you.’ It just showed that he was in it with me. Even to this day, he would be there cheering for me, rooting for me.”
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Wills and Roberts gravitated to every different in spring of 2002, Doc’s first season with Los Angeles. In a 2002 interview, Roberts mentioned, “I wanted someone who would give me a chance.” Wills mentioned, “I wanted someone who would listen.” They had been a really perfect pair, they usually labored tirelessly in combination, on bunting, on working, on baseball.
The dating stayed sturdy, as is clear from Roberts’ emotion in discussing Wills. Everyone in Dodgers Nation will omit Maury Wills, however possibly nobody up to the group’s skipper.