Here’s a newsbreak: Not a single Dodgers fan celebrating Dave Roberts as the new manager isn’t aware of his coaching background — or lack thereof. Shocking, I know.
Here’s the thing: sports are supposed to be fun. Optimism is fun. When there’s hardly any reason not to be optimistic in the moment, that’s fun, too. I repeat: Sports are supposed to be fun, which, again, is a shocker.
So, when I see articles like Steve Dilbeck’s in the L.A. Times telling the fan base to pump its breaks on the “lovefest” for Roberts, I can’t help but wonder: That’s really the stance you want to beat everyone to?
I mean, he obviously can and no one is tackling that angle, but no one is doing so for a pretty simple reason: It’s a stupid angle.
Better yet, it’s a stupid angle that could wait for literally any other point of Roberts’ tenure. Bringing it up as he’s still getting congratulatory calls, texts messages or tweets just comes across as the dude at a party who only wants to talk politics.
“Yeah, the punch is great. You know what’s a real gut punch? Social effing Security.”
No one likes that guy. Don’t be that guy.
One of my favorite little idioms goes as follows: “There is no easier way to make one feel smarter than to reject the ideas of others.”
So, as the vast majority of fans are celebrating the Dodgers’ first minority hire in its incredible history who also happens to have battled cancer and overcome being drafted in the 28th round, what better way to make Dilbeck feel better about himself than to tell everyone to calm down?
Again, though, everyone is aware of everything Dilbeck points out. We just don’t care at this particular moment. Here’s how he opens the article.
Not to rock the waters on this Dave Roberts love boat cruise we all seem embarked upon, but you do realize he has managed exactly zero games in his entire life? (OK, one as an interim manager.)
That there are going to be agonizing growing pains along the way? That rookie managers have won the World Series exactly four times in baseball history and just once since 1961? That, yes, his career blossomed as a Dodger but his signature moment came as a Red Sox?
Really? To paraphrase:
“He might not win a World Series in his first year and his most memorable moment as a player came for a different team.”
This is such a ridiculous response. There’s no guarantee a more seasoned manager would win said World Series and throwing out players whose most memorable moment came from any other team eliminates 99% of any available coaches.
Yes, there are holes in Roberts’ resumé. Yes, the Dodgers have been shuffling managers quite a bit in recent years. Yes, the Dodgers have struggled in the playoffs. On the day that the team announces their latest hire, though, we just don’t care about that stuff. There’s plenty of time to bring it up later.
Mr. Dilbeck, you’re better than this. Don’t be that guy.