Dodgers manager Roberts guarantees 2022 World Series victory | Professional soccer

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A year after finishing second to the Giants in the NL West and being knocked out of the playoffs by the eventual champion Atlanta Braves, the Dodgers are once again aiming for a World Series title.

And manager Dave Roberts has faith in his team.

“We will win the World Series in 2022,” Roberts said Thursday on The Dan Patrick Show. “We’re going to win the World Series this year. Put it on the record.

It looks like Roberts wanted to make a statement to his team and the rest of the baseball world that expectations for the Dodgers are sky high heading into 2022. And he has good reason.

Roberts won the title with the Dodgers in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, then finished one game behind the Giants for the division crown and MLB’s best record. Los Angeles defeated the Giants in a tense five-game divisional series before the Braves eliminated them in six games in the NLCS.

The Dodgers responded by signing the face of the Braves, first baseman Freddie Freeman, to a six-year, $162 million contract in free agency after losing shortstop Corey Seager to the Rangers. They also won’t have 2021 midseason pitching acquisition Max Scherzer, who was off to them after arriving from Washington last fall. Trea Turner, who they acquired alongside Scherzer, should take Seager’s place in the short term.

The Giants, as they did last season, have taken a less star-studded approach to building their 2022 roster as president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi has focused on bolstering the rotation – re-signing Anthony DeSclafani and Alex Wood while adding Alex Cobb and Carlos Rondón – and create a flexible group of positional players to take on a variety of opponents. San Francisco also let its big midseason acquisition walk in free agency, as Kris Bryant signed a seven-year, $182 million contract with the Rockies.

Roberts’ response grew out of an end-of-sentence prompt from Patrick: The Dodgers will win the World Series if…

“We play a full season and there are playoffs,” Roberts said.

Responding to the spirit of Patrick’s prompt, about a key to the Dodgers’ success, Roberts pointed to his pitching team.

“We win the World Series if our starting staff stays healthy,” Roberts said. “I know it’s vague but that’s my answer.”

The Dodgers and Giants have taken steps in recent years to ensure their starting pitchers aren’t overloaded, planning to use more than the standard five-man rotation during the year. Whichever team is most effective at doing so this season could have a head start in the divisional race — and a chance to achieve Roberts’ stated goal.

Copyright 2022 Tribune Content Agency.

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