Following their world series loss to Houston, Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts was forced to explain to press and fans why Yu Darvish and not Clayton Kershaw started Game 7 for the team.
Let’s face it, Roberts made the wrong call on Wednesday night, as Darvish was rocked for five runs in 1.2 innings, and then Kershaw went on to deliver four scoreless innings in relief. Following the game, many began asking why, if Roberts had no aversion to using Kershaw for as many pitches as he did, the why did his ace lefty not start the game?
Roberts explained following the crushing defeat that he didn’t want to give Kershaw the ball on two days’ rest. In hindsight, wrong.
During the world series, Roberts has had to face many questions over his pitcher usage, but his move to start Darvish was a defensible one. He obviously didn’t plan to use Kershaw for as long as he ended up having to, and it would have been easy to bench Darvish following his bad Game 3, but given that he’s a quality pitcher who was very good in the AL playoffs he gave it a shot. He’ll ultimately have to live with the second-guessing for a long time to come, though, given the way both of his pitchers performed.