When the Los Angeles Dodgers acquired Mookie Betts from the Boston Red Sox in February, they knew they were getting one of the best players both on and off the field.
Not only did Betts have a big role in the organization ending its World Series drought, his infectious personality helped bring out the best in those around him. Betts embraced a leadership role in his first season with the Dodgers, and that was evident early on when he delivered a motivational speech in Spring Training.
More recently, he was credited by Max Muncy for shifting the National League Championship Series with a shoestring catch that started a double play in Game 5.
Over the years Betts has gained plenty of friends on other teams as well, including Tampa Bay Rays shortstop Willy Adames. The two embraced with a hug in the middle of Game 1 of the World Series shortly after Betts stole second base.
Their relationship dates back to Adames’ MLB debut, which he detailed while voicing appreciation for the kindness Betts exemplifies, via Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports:
“Since then,” Adames said, “every time I get to second he says hi to me, talks to me. He treats me like he knew me his whole life. That means a lot to me. That’s a player that you look up to and you enjoy watching him play, for the energy he brings to the game and everything he brings to the game. …
“For me to have him to talk to me that way, you know, every time he gets to second, even off the field we text each other, it’s been really fun. The way he comes up to me and talks to me. That day, he even asked for that hug.
“That means the world to me. Because, like, a player like him and a guy like me, I’m kind of new to the league. For me to see that from him, it means a lot. That tells you how special he is. Such a great person. Such a great heart. I think that makes him special, the way he treats people. That’s the best thing. I’m just happy for the way he treats people and the way he’s been treating me.”
Betts being touted as one of the most approachable players in the league was seen on multiple occasions throughout the 2020 season. Such makes him all the more special, making the Dodgers’ trade for him look even better by the day.
Betts cites consistency as biggest factor in winning World Series
During a recent appearance on SportsNet LA’s “This Is Our Year” special, Betts highlighted consistency as the biggest factor in the Dodgers ending their championship drought.
Betts was the epitome of consistency for the Dodgers, as he batted a stellar .292/.366/.562 with nine doubles, one triple, 16 home runs, 39 RBI, 47 runs scored and 10 stolen bases in 55 regular-season games.
He went on to hit .296 with eight doubles, two home runs, eight RBI, 15 runs scored and six stolen bases in 18 postseason games. The 28-year-old had his fingerprints all over the Dodgers’ World Series-clinching win, scoring the go-ahead run and later hitting a solo homer.