Boston’s Diminutive Bad Boy
- Updated: August 6, 2008
2007 Rookie of the Year, 2B Dustin Pedroia
Boston’s diminutive 2B, Dustin Pedroia, is having another eye-popping year. In this, his 2nd season in the big leagues, he was voted into the starting line up at the All Star game (although some say that the Ranger’s Ian Kinsler would have been a better choice). He is also tied for the major league lead in multi-hit games (45) through August 5th and is in the top 10 in batting average, runs scored, hits, singles and doubles.
But I recently learned something new about the man the Red Sox call “Pedi”…he’s got one of the biggest mouths in all of baseball! Now I knew about his playful feud with Boston 1B Kevin Youkilis over who’s the fastest (Youkilis wins in my opinion) and how Terry “Tito” Francona beats him on a regular basis in cribbage, but I didn’t know about what makes Pedroia tick. After reading Jeff Bradley’s article in the recent ESPN Magazine article titled, “170 POUNDS OF MOUTH”, I can now say that I know a whole lot more about him. Check it out, it’s a great read! If you missed the link, click HERE.
After reading this article by Bradley, I have come to the conclusion that every team should have a Pedroia!
The article shows you the verbal side of the second baseman that both teammates and opponents get to see, the LOUD side. If taken in small doses, it might seem like he’s an arrogant punk, but his teammates would tell you differently. The same can be said by Baltimore’s 2B Brian Roberts, who worked out in the same facility in Arizona as the diminutive one this past off season (as is mentioned in the article). Here’s what Pedroia says about how seriously he takes himself:
“C’mon, I’m like 5’2″ 115,” Pedroia says. “And this game’s tough. I try to bring a loose attitude and make sure everyone’s having fun. Hang around our team long enough, and you’ll see that most of the jokes are on me.”
The bottom line is that he’s a fighter who has had to overcome the odds at almost every level of his baseball career, even as a kid. Due to his size, he was always written off, especially offensively, yet he always seemed to be the best hitter on almost every team he played for before reaching his current position in Boston. They said he was too small and had too BIG of a swing and that it (his swing) would need to be adjusted if he was ever to become even a bench player at the major league level. Well, so far anyway, it looks like Boston’s new # 15 is the one left laughing as he is once again showing that he can be quite the offensive force in “The Show”.
Now maybe it’s because I’m from Boston originally or maybe because at 5’5”, I’m right around the same height as Pedroia, but his grit and determination has made him one of my favorite players. He’s on a list that includes Ken Griffey Jr., Hanley Ramirez, Josh Beckett, David Ortiz, Derek Jeter, Brandon Phillips, Mariano Rivera, Jonathan Papelbon, Jon Lester, Josh Hamilton, Jacoby Ellsbury, Scott Kazmir, Ryan Howard, Jake Peavy, Roy Halliday and Ozzie Smith (ok, Smith is retired, but I just had to fit him in there J), just to name a few.