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Dave Roberts (outfielder): Wikis

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Dave Roberts

Outfielder
Born: May 31, 1972 (1972-05-31) (age 37)
Okinawa, Japan
Batted: Left Threw: Left 
MLB debut
August 7, 1999 for the Cleveland Indians
Last MLB appearance
September 27, 2008 for the San Francisco Giants
Career statistics
Batting average     .266
Hits     721
Stolen bases     243
Home runs     23
Runs batted in     213
Teams
Career highlights and awards

David Ray Roberts (born May 31, 1972 in Okinawa, Japan) is a former Major League Baseball outfielder. Previously, he played with the Cleveland Indians (1999-2001), Los Angeles Dodgers (2002-2004), Boston Red Sox (2004), San Diego Padres (2005-2006), and San Francisco Giants (2007-2008). Roberts bats and throws left-handed. He is the son of a retired Marine in Japan (Waymon Roberts) and a native Okinawan mother (Eiko) and was raised in San Diego, California. He is perhaps best known for his stolen base in the 9th inning of Game 4 of the 2004 ALCS, which was such a notable play that it is often simply referred to as "The Steal."[1] He is currently a Special Assistant to Baseball Operations for the Padres.

Contents

High school, college

Roberts attended Rancho Buena Vista High School in Vista, California, where he was a standout in football, basketball, and baseball. In football, he was a three-year starter at quarterback; as a senior, he helped lead his team to the San Diego Section Class 3A championship.

He was a member of the UCLA Bruins baseball team.

Major league career

Roberts had above-average knowledge of the strike zone. He had little power, but was a spray hitter who can use raw speed to get on base and stretch singles to doubles. Once on base, he commonly "manufactured" runs by employing such tactics as stealing second base, moving to third on a grounder, and coming home on a sacrifice fly. When he was healthy, Roberts was widely known as one of the best base stealers in baseball[citation needed]. From 2002 to 2006, Roberts had 195 steals, as well as an 81 percent success rate, both of which were the second-best in the majors among base stealers with 175 steals.[2] Roberts had exceptional range in the outfield, but his below-average arm occasionally allowed his opponents to take extra bases on him.

Roberts made a large contribution to the 2004 Red Sox' championship post-season, even though he did not play in the 2004 World Series. Most notable was his stolen base against the Yankees in the ALCS Game 4. The Red Sox were facing elimination in the bottom of the ninth inning, down 4 runs to 3. Kevin Millar drew a walk from Yankees closer Mariano Rivera. Roberts, who had not played in ten days, came in to pinch run. Rivera threw to first base three times (the last almost picked off Roberts); on the next pitch, Roberts stole second base, just beating the throw. Bill Mueller followed with a single, Roberts scored, and the Sox went on to win in twelve innings and begin their run of eight straight wins, culminating in Boston's first World Series title since 1918. Roberts' ninth-inning steal is often referred to as "The Steal of the Century", "The Steal Heard Round the World", or simply "The Steal." [3] In 2006, the event was recognized as a Memorable Moment in Red Sox history by the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame. He retained lasting status as a hero in Boston, later receiving standing ovations in Fenway every time he came up to bat for the Giants.[4]

Dave Roberts in Center Field at AT&T Park on May 5, 2007.

The Red Sox organization was pleased with Roberts's performance but couldn't make use of him in 2005. They arranged for a trade with the San Diego Padres; Roberts was exchanged for Jay Payton. The speedy Roberts seemed an good choice to roam the spacious outfield at Petco Park. He played center field for the Padres until they acquired Gold Glove winner Mike Cameron from the New York Mets before the 2006 season. Roberts then moved to left field.


In December 2006, Roberts signed with the San Francisco Giants. The Giants, trying to acquire a center fielder, first tried to sign Gary Matthews, Jr. and Juan Pierre, but both players passed on the Giants in favor of other teams. Roberts agreed to a 3-year, $18-million deal with the team in early December 2006. By signing with the Giants, Roberts and teammate Ryan Klesko were reunited with former Padre manager Bruce Bochy who had become the Giants' new manager about a month prior. The Giants backloaded the deal, agreeing to pay Roberts $5 million in 2007 and $6.5 million in 2008 and 2009 [5].

Roberts' career with the Giants got off to a slow start because of injury. He spent most of May and early June on the disabled list. Roberts was batting only .216 before he went on the disabled list, but his swing had been hampered by the bone chips and spurs in his elbow that required surgery[6]. When Roberts returned, his numbers improved, but they were not in line with his production in 2006. Some Giants announcers speculated on broadcasts that Roberts had come back too early from elbow surgery because of his desire to help the team. Roberts' production was also limited upon his return by other minor nagging injuries. His typical offensive production returned in July and August. On April 10, 2009 Roberts was released by the Giants. On April 12, 2009, Roberts retired.

In May 2009, Roberts joined NESN as a studio analyst and substitute color commentator for Red Sox telecasts while regular commentator Jerry Remy recovers from lung cancer surgery.

See also

References

  1. ^ Dave Roberts Statistics - The Baseball Cube
  2. ^ Fortner, Mitch. "Dave Roberts, OF, San Francisco Giants." December 17, 2006. http://www.kffl.com/article.php/62832/88.
  3. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/boston/mlb/columns/story?columnist=crasnick_jerry&id=4474049
  4. ^ ESPN - Pedroia, Drew combine for eight RBIs to beat Giants - MLB
  5. ^ Schulman, Henry. "Third choice, top dollar: Giants sign Roberts for three years, $18 million." The San Francisco Chronicle. Sunday, December 3, 2006. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/12/02/SPdroberts02.DTL&hw=Dave+roberts+year+deal&sn=003&sc=639. Accessed on August 17, 2007.
  6. ^ Schulman, Henry. "Roberts' return could provide spark." The San Francisco Chronicle. Monday, June 4, 2007. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/06/04/SPG5AQ6AV41.DTL&hw=Dave+Roberts+injury&sn=002&sc=834. Accessed on August 17, 2007.

External links

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