To understand the complicated case of Barry Bonds, Manny Ramirez and so many others regarding enshrinement in the Baseball Hall of Fame, all anyone really needs to do is listen to Dustin Pedroia.
The former Boston Red Sox second baseman joined The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal on Tuesday to discuss the impending announcement of the Baseball Hall of Fame’s Class of 2022 and the legacy of his former teammate, David Ortiz, who very well could become a first-ballot selection. But he also revealed that he doesn’t endorse the candidacy of another former teammate in Ramirez.
Ramirez, who played for the Red Sox from 2001 to 2007, was twice suspended for violation of the league’s drug policy, with both violations coming after his Boston tenure. While Ramirez certainly is a contender for Cooperstown on paper having recorded 12 All-Star selections, nine Silver Slugger awards and two World Series titles, his run-ins with the league office are enough of an asterisk for Pedroia.
And to the second baseman, who retired in 2021 following various injuries that marked his final seasons, it’s personal.
“(Ramirez was) one of a kind,” Pedroia said of Ramirez. “But obviously, there’s rules. So that’s where I’m kind of at. I look at my own situation. I played at (5-foot-8), 165 pounds, having a great career and one slide deters my career. Instead of trying to take something that could maybe help me out health-wise so I could play a longer career, I didn’t. I chose not to do that. I value the game and try to play the game the right way and set the example for my kids.
“But everybody’s different. Everybody has their own way about them and everybody has their own choices to make. I’m not one to judge him or anything like that, I just can speak for me.”
The Hall of Fame announcement is scheduled for 6 p.m. ET.