Dave Roberts, one of the heroes of the 2004 Red Sox championship revealed that he has been diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Roberts was right in the middle of what can legitimately be described as “The Greatest Moment In Red Sox History”. Here was the the sequence: Kevin Millar works a walk off Mariano Rivera in the 9th inning of Game 4 of the 2004 ALCS. Roberts pinch runs and, after nearly being picked off, steals second under the tag of Derek Jeter. The lore is that Jeter asks Roberts how the heck he came off the bench after nine frigid innings and stole that base. Roberts just smiled–as he did throughout his tenure in Boston and with the Indians, Dodgers, Giants and Padres. The Sox went on to the greatest comeback in MLB history and a World Series ring.
The next summer, as this writer was attending a Giants-Padres game in San Francisco, I caught Dave’s eye as he ambled around the San Diego dugout. I smiled, and tipped my Red Sox cap in his direction. He gave me that broad smile and waved and we both silently knew the message–“Thank you”.
As Terry Francona has stated, “I expect Dave can probably outrun anything. I know we’ve got a lot of people pulling for him here. He probably knows that–everywhere he’s been.”
Indeed, we are are all pulling for Dave to beat this disease. And, we here in Boston, will never forget him.