Dodgers Manager Dave Roberts reflects on meeting with Clayton Kershaw

Clayton Kershaw stands alone at the top of the Dodgers rotation.

Clayton Kershaw stands alone at the top of the Dodgers rotation.

(Sean M. Haffey / Getty Images)

New Dodgers Manager Dave Roberts said he spent four hours Sunday at the home of Clayton Kershaw, sharing vision for the team with his staff ace.

“You look at the players that have meant so much to the organization and performed at Clayton’s level, that’s kind of an obligation for me and something I recognized and kind of wanted to build that trust with him,” Roberts said.

Roberts laughed when asked whether Kershaw asked him to get rid of Yasiel Puig. Last month, outfielder Scott Van Slyke’s father implied on a St. Louis radio program that Kershaw asked management to trade Puig.


“There was some talk about Puig,” Roberts said.

Roberts said Kershaw and Puig will be part of a group assembled by Major League Baseball that will take a goodwill tour to Puig’s home country of Cuba.

“That was encouraging for me,” Roberts said.

Will Kershaw and Puig be roommates?

Roberts smiled.

“Fortunately, the game where it’s at right now, I don’t think that they have to be roommates,” Roberts said. “The state of baseball’s in good shape, so they won’t be sharing a room together.”

Roberts acknowledged he was disappointed by Zack Greinke’s decision to leave the organization and sign with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

However, Roberts sounded upbeat about the re-signing Chase Utley and adding Hisashi Iwakuma.

Roberts also sounded excited about the prospect of a reported trade with the Cincinnati Reds for All-Star closer Aroldis Chapman.

Of Chapman and incumbent closer Kenley Jansen, Roberts said, “Potentially, you get two of the best closers, back-of-the-game guys, sharing the same bullpen. That’s exciting.”

Asked about the problems that could arise if Jansen is asked to move into a setup role, Roberts said, “I think it’s just managing things. Again, this is all hypothetical. We don’t know. That would be a pleasant problem. We’ll see what happens.”

One of the owners of Red Stitch Wine, Roberts also weighed in the quality of the 2015 vintage.

“The crop is going to be lower production,” he said, acknowledging the vintage will fall short of widely celebrated 2012 and 2013.

Follow Dylan Hernandez on Twitter @dylanohernandez


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