PHOENIX --Dodgers manager Dave Roberts was asked on Saturday morning and confirmed that he in fact owes new pitcher Kenta Maeda dinner. Here is the story of how that came about.
"I threw batting practice to the starting pitchers and they were all sharing Maeda's bat, a Japanese bat. They were thinking it was the arrow, not the Indian," Roberts recalled. "There were a lot of home runs with that bat."
That prompted some good-natured ribbing to get Maeda to use a new bat.
"So he used an American bat, and I told him if he hit a home run with a different bat out of five swings, I'll buy him dinner," Roberts explained. "The first ball I threw over the plate, he hit a homer."
"This had some elevation. He got the ball out in front, got some extension, good trajectory. It was a legit homer."
Roberts was asked where he might take Maeda to dinner.
"I owe him dinner, so it's his choice. I'm thinking a nice American dinner, steak and potatoes," Roberts said.
Some suggested a fast food restaurant.
"Definitely not McDonalds," Roberts said with a smile. "We eat healthy in this camp."