Dustin Pedroia Tells Clubhouse Details of Final Game in 2011, Still Can’t Get Over Red Sox Collapse (Video)

Last year, Dustin Pedroia hit .307 with a career high 21 homers and 91 RBI.  In September, while his team was in free fall and his clubhouse in disarray, Pedroia hit .304 with four homers and 19 RBI.  He drove in Boston’s final run of the season, a solo homer in Baltimore that gave the Sox a 3-2 lead over the Orioles in the fifth.  

It was the final run the Sox would score in 2011.  

On Thursday night, Pedoia joined us on NESN’s Red Sox Live from Ft. Myers.  He was candid, as always, talking about the loss of his friend Terry Francona.  He also shed some light into the surreal atmosphere surrounding the team on that final night of the season.  

He also vowed to do everything he can to make sure nothing like the collapse of last September ever happens again.  

Here’s what Pedroia had to say during his appearance with Tom Caron and Peter Gammons on NESN: 

On emotion of missing playoffs…

“It was really tough, when you go out and compete for that long for six and a half months, and when you lose the last game of the year and you don’t make the playoffs. Especially when we were actually winning the division going into the month. So, it was hard. Some guys say they are over it but I’ll always look back, I’ll never be over it. It was one of those years, you’re one inning away from going to the playoffs and having a chance to go to the World Series. It’s definitely tough to swallow but I’m thinking it’s not going to happen again.

On what happened during the final game of 2011, and during the rain delay (with the Sox leading 3-2) in Baltimore…

“It was weird, once we were up 3-2 I remember the rain delay and we were coming in and I’m kind of ratting them out but we had two idiot advanced scouts handing out ALDS books for each team. And I was locked in, I was focused, I was pacing and I didn’t think the rain was going to last. I told Bill, the video guy, you got to have these guys get this stuff out of here, we still have a long way to go. The Yankees were up 7-0 or whatever. Then all of a sudden, I don’t know if that was bad karma or what but I remember just walking off the field and that was it, you couldn’t go play tomorrow.

On extra motivation for the coming season…

“Not really, I’m motivated for every year. I train one way, I train 100 percent. I’m ready for every season, I’m ready to play as many games as my manager will let me. Every year I’m motivated, I don’t need anything, any added fuel to the fire for me.

On his own performance…

“I expect to do well, but first I want my team to win. I don’t worry about me, I’m going to be fine. I just want to make sure that our team is in the right position to go out and win a World Series. That’s what I’m here for. I’m not playing to put up good numbers.

On his health….

“It was just kind of the same stuff. I got the screw taken out of my foot and I did my rehab process for six-weeks but once after I was fine. Last offseason we couldn’t work on explosion a lot of running, so this offseason I could do that and we hit it hard. It’s the most, I was throwing some weight around. I’m excited I can’t wait.

“That was the tough part for me, the beginning of the year. It was cold and my foot was stiff and that was tough. But later in the year I felt, I surprisingly felt better. So, I feel a lot better once it’s out though.”

Fenway Anniversary…

“It’s the 100th anniversary, I’m about to tear that thing (the wall) down.

On the firing of Terry Francona…

“Things change and I understand that, I think I was more upset with what the media did to him. He’s a first-class guy, he treated everyone with respect. That’s why I was close with him, he treated me with respect from day one when I probably didn’t deserve it. I hit .150 for a month and this guy stuck with me. I owe him everything because I’m still in the big leagues and having a great career because he probably said a few words to our front office and said ‘hey, keep this guy around.’ So, I’ll always be grateful for what he did for me.

On what Francona may say about Pedroia when the former manager works Red Sox games on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball

“Well, he’s not too smart, everyone knows that. He’s kind of a moron. But, no I’ll probably laugh everytime he’s on there because he looks like the Monopoly guy still.

On SS hopeful Mike Aviles…

“Mike’s great, I know a lot of people say he can hit, but he’s not a very good defender. He plays a very good shortstop. His fundamentals are great, his flips and feeds are always in the same spot. We’re already on the same page.

On defense…

“That’s what has helped make me a good defender. the more groundballs you take, the more feeds you take with your teammates are going to make you better prepared in the game for it.

On whether or not Boston can match its MLB-leading run production from 2011 next year…

“Without a doubt, we have some great offensive players and we’re all going to continue to get better. I’m going to continue to get better, [Jacoby] Els(bury) is going to continue to get better. [Adrian] Gonzo [Gonzalez], jeez Gonzo what is he 29 years old, I mean it seems like he’s older than that because he’s done it for so long. We’ve got a lot of great offensive players and we are going to be fine.”

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