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Dave Roberts frustrated with Dodgers as Giants pull off sweep

Dave Roberts’ scrum with reporters Sunday morning began with a discussion of Walker Buehler’s injury and the void the pitcher’s absence will create for the rest of the staff.

However, amid his team’s recent slump, the conversation quickly turned to another of Roberts’ frustrations — one he believed was more pervasive in the Dodgers’ clubhouse and much harder for the typically mild-mannered manager to reconcile.

In unsolicited comments, Roberts said the team’s mindset needed to improve, that the Dodgers’ sense of urgency, particularly at the plate, needed to change.

He didn’t question the performance of his players, but bluntly declared the team “too talented” to endure the malaise they were feeling.

“People get caught up in their own individual ways,” Roberts said. “But all that focus on just winning one game and whatever it takes to win that day, we need to get back to that mindset.”

It didn’t result in a win on Sunday afternoon.

Despite an impressive start from Julio Urías (3-6), ample chances with runners on base, and what Roberts said after the game was the team’s overall better approach, the Dodgers suffered their ninth loss in their last 13 games, a 2-0 Loss to the San Francisco Giants, who completed a three-game sweep at Oracle Park.

“Overall I thought there was a lot of competition,” Roberts said after the game, adopting a different tone than his comments earlier in the day. “But again, if you have this situation [with runners on base]you have to find a way to push these guys over.”

In fact, it wasn’t difficult to pinpoint the Dodgers’ biggest problem in the setback of the series finale.

Dodgers starting pitcher Julio Urías delivers in the first inning against the San Francisco Giants.

Dodgers starter Julio Urías gave up two runs and three hits in six innings, taking the loss. He struck out 10 and walked none.

(Jeff Chiu / Associated Press)

They went 0 for 10 with runners in goal position. They stranded nine men on the base. And despite bringing on the leadoff batsman in four innings, including three times with a leadoff double, they still failed to capitalize and were shut out for the third time this season against left-hander Carlos Rodón (5-4) and three Giants Helper.

It wasn’t the first time the Dodgers (37-23) had struggled in situations like this.

In the series — the first time the Dodgers have been swept by the Giants in a three-game set since 2016 — they went two for 24 with runners in goal position.

The team has averaged more than seven runners on base in their last 13 games, where they averaged just 3.6 runs per game.

“We did a good job setting the table,” said third baseman Justin Turner. “We just didn’t manage to get that big hit to turn that off.”

Earlier on Sunday, Roberts pointed to the lineup’s mindset as a possible explanation.

“I just think the urgency of doing whatever it takes to win on offense that night wasn’t there,” Roberts said, adding, “It’s not a lack of care. There is no lack of trying. But the mindset has to go back to what it takes to win a game.”

When asked why he thinks this was the case, Roberts wasn’t sure.

“I don’t know that answer, but I need to find out,” he said. “Because it’s becoming increasingly clear that we’re not doing enough to win baseball games. We’re too talented. I have to find out.”

Roberts said he “spoke to a number of people” on the team to share those feelings.

Neither Justin Turner nor Trea Turner said they were one of them. They also had different reactions to the manager’s attitude.

Acknowledging that “sometimes that could definitely be the case,” Trea said, “Sometimes I think there’s a better way to be a little bit more aggressive and confident than just sitting back and waiting for it to happen. “

He added: “I don’t feel like we’re defensive. I just feel like we could come down faster and stay down. I think we can do better than that.”

Justin said “I don’t know what that means” when asked about Roberts’ pre-game comments.

“I don’t think we’re going to do anything differently,” he said. “Get out there and set the table and try to get a big hit and [we] simply not.”

Finally, on Sunday, it squandered a performance by Urías with six innings, two runs and 10 strikeouts and allowed the third-ranked Giants (33-26) to come within 3½ games of the Dodgers in first-ranked National League West standings. The second-placed San Diego Padres were a half game behind.

“It’s just a matter of really refocusing and everyone doing their part, and that includes me, that we all get on the same page,” Roberts said. “I saw that today. It just didn’t work out.”

https://www.latimes.com/sports/dodgers/story/2022-06-12/dave-roberts-frustrated-dodgers-swept-san-francisco-giants-mlb Dave Roberts frustrated with Dodgers as Giants pull off sweep

Emma Bowman

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