The Sox second baseman has been challenged by fans and media alike this season, in a way that he hasn't been through his entire career. He's been adored by fans — and the media, too — for the way he's played the game since arriving in Boston.
However, a couple of questionable decisions led many to believe that Pedroia was doing all he could to run manager Bobby Valentine out of town. He was painted by some as a player who was actually hurting the clubhouse culture.
But as the club continues to remodel on the run — as evidenced by last week's megadeal — Pedroia is also trying to clear his name, and he insists that Boston is where he wants to be for all of his playing days.
"I want to be a Red Sox my whole career," the second baseman said in an interview with WEEI.com. "I want to be here during the World Series times, during the September collapse, the biggest trade, and I want to be here when we're World Series champs again. I want that.
"Ive been through the times when not a writer said a bad thing about me, or the talk show hadn't said a bad thing about me, and I want to be here when they say a bad thing about me. I look in the mirror every day and and the end of the season I'm going to look back and say I did everything I could to help us win. Were there parts I regret? Yeah, without question. There were a lot more than in the past, but I learned from those things. It's going to make me better. I believe that. Yeah, I have to believe that. It's going to."
Pedroia also offered up explanations for the various run-ins or issues he's been related to when it comes to Valentine. The second baseman insists that he would never try to get Valentine fired.
Pedroia also spoke about the infamous photo that was mentioned in the Yahoo! Sports story. Pedroia was one of the main characters in the story, which detailed a reported desire to have Valentine fired. It was reported that a photo of the second baseman posing in front of a napping Valentine made its way around the club. Pedroia didn't deny the photo in his interview with WEEI.com.
"I was trying to keep the guys … We weren't playing very well, trying to keep a loose atmosphere," Pedroia explained to the website. "That was it. You have to enjoy your life. It was funny. I'm not trying to be disrespectful."
Pedroia insisted that he has a good relationship with Valentine, to the point where the two are able to joke together.
"All of our intentions are good. We all want to win the game. Everybody wants to have fun doing it. It's not to disrespect anybody. I've never disrespected anybody."
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