Dustin Pedroia took the advice “dress for the job you want” to another level.
Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora revealed this week at spring training in Fort Myers, Fla., that Pedroia recently sent him a video, in which the veteran second baseman could be seen fielding ground balls during a workout in Arizona. The twist? Pedroia participated in the drills while wearing a full Red Sox uniform, complete with a 2018 World Series patch.
So, why did Pedroia do this? The four-time All-Star explained Friday at JetBlue Park while speaking with reporters for the first time since arriving at Red Sox spring training.
“Yeah, (clubhouse attendant Steve Murphy) Murph sent me, I have to wear a brace when I play. I’m like, ‘Man, I don’t want to get to camp and… ‘ I can’t wear a brace over my pants,” Pedroia said, per WEEI.com. “Let’s not be ridiculous. So they sent me my pants, and I put my pants on and I had just a shirt. I’m looking like an idiot. I had my World Series jersey, so I’m like, ‘Let’s go.’ So I went to Chandler-Gilbert (High School) full uni. It was awesome.”
Pedroia, who underwent knee surgery in October 2017, was limited to just three games in late May last season before landing back on the disabled list and missing the remainder of the 2018 campaign. He didn’t suit up at all during Boston’s playoff run, which ended with a World Series title.
It’s fair to say the 35-year-old has a massive chip on his shoulder in 2019. And while it’s difficult to project what Pedroia will produce after being limited to 108 games over the last two seasons, him rocking a full uniform to a high school field in Arizona suggests his sights are set on returning to the Red Sox’s starting lineup and eventually the Fall Classic. It’d be a fool’s errand to count him out.
“They thought the champs were in town,” Pedroia joked Friday when asked what others thought of his full-uni workout. “I don’t know what they were thinking.”
Pedroia has been hampered by injuries throughout his 13-year career. The Red Sox sure could use his stability in the middle of their infield, though, and it appears the organization is optimistic he’ll return to being a productive player upon rejoining Boston’s starting lineup this season.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images