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Dustin Pedroia’s Hall of Fame resume is probably better than you think

Dustin Pedroia will solely be 41 years previous when he makes his debut on the Corridor of Fame poll for the category of 2025. 

Pedroia formally retired on Monday, closing the ebook on an unforgettable profession for the Pink Sox at simply 37 years previous. The harm to his left knee, the one which by no means healed correctly regardless of each try to make it higher, led to partial knee substitute surgical procedure that was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic till December 2020. That shut the door, lastly. 

“It wasn’t bodily doable for me to play with a partial knee substitute,” Pedroia mentioned in a Zoom information convention Monday afternoon. “As soon as I bought that executed, I knew.”

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Life after the surgical procedure has been encouraging, although, as he seems to be at his future along with his spouse and three children.  

“I grinded day by day simply to have the ability to play with my children, simply to reside a traditional life,” he mentioned. “My knee was unhealthy, and I’m a younger man. In December, I had the surgical procedure and per week later, I might inform that I might stroll with out ache. I might principally do every thing however run. I can’t run anymore. Which is okay. I don’t have to run.” 

With Pedroia lastly among the many ranks of former ballplayers, it’s solely pure to attempt to put his profession in perspective. And people retrospectives carry up an apparent query: Will Pedroia wind up within the Corridor of Fame? 

His Cooperstown resume is slightly fascinating.

Let’s begin right here: The Corridor of Fame plaque gallery consists of 20 gamers who have been primarily second basemen throughout their careers (Miller Huggins was a second baseman, too, however he was inducted as a supervisor). Of these 20 second-sackers, the typical bWAR is 69.5, the typical JAWS is 57.0 and the typical bWAR7 (seven-year peak) is 44.4.

Pedroia checks in at 51.6 bWAR, 46.3 JAWS and 41.0 bWAR7.

Not surprisingly, Pedroia is closest to the typical Corridor of Famer in peak WAR. Roberto Alomar and Craig Biggio have been each elected of their second 12 months on the BBWAA poll, and their bWAR7 numbers are very comparable: 42.9 and 41.8, respectively. 

Pedroia’s back-of-the-baseball card counting statistics are a bit missing, as a result of harm points restricted him to principally solely eight wholesome seasons (defining that as years with greater than 105 video games performed). Pedroia completed with 1,512 video games; of these 20 Corridor of Fame second basemen, solely Jackie Robinson (1,382) performed fewer video games. Fourteen of the 20 gamers had greater than 2,100 video games. 

Regardless of that, Pedroia’s 51.6 bWAR is best than six of the 20 already in Cooperstown: Bobby Doerr (51.1), Nellie Fox (49.5), Johnny Evers (47.7), Tony Lazzeri (47.3), Pink Schoendienst (44.2) and Invoice Mazeroski (36.5). And it’s value noting that 4 gamers with unimaginable careers skew the numbers for the “common” Corridor of Fame second baseman. 

Rogers Hornsby checks in at 127.1, Eddie Collins is at 123.9, Nap Lajoie is at 107.3 and Joe Morgan’s at 100.5. Pedroia’s profession wasn’t the equal of these 4, in fact. However that’s not likely the query. The query is how Pedroia stacks up towards ALL the Corridor of Fame second basemen in Cooperstown. 

It’s higher than you may assume, particularly when seen by the right lens.

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Pedroia made an prompt impression on the large leagues, after a stellar profession at Arizona State. He was the overwhelming alternative for the 2007 AL Rookie of the Yr; he hit .317 with a 3.9 bWAR in 139 video games. In 2008, he gained one other award: the AL MVP. Pedroia led the league with a 6.9 bWAR, batting .326 with 118 runs, 213 hits, 17 homers, 20 stolen bases and 83 RBIs, and he gained the Gold Glove, as nicely. 

He was a four-time AL All-Star (2008-10, 2013) and a four-time Gold Glove winner (2008, 2011, 2013-14). In his last full 12 months, at 32 years previous, Pedroia hit .318 with 15 homers and an .825 OPS in 2016. Coping with a painful knee harm in 2017 — Manny Machado over-slid second base and impacted Pedroia’s knee in April — he hit .293 in 105 video games. He’d solely play 9 video games whole in 2018-19. He went 3-for-31 in these 9 video games, dropping his profession common from .300 to .299. 

Throughout Pedroia’s years with Boston, the Pink Sox have been common postseason members. Pedroia hit .325 with a .422 on-base share in 20 ALCS video games. His Pink Sox made the World Collection twice — they gained each occasions — and he was in the midst of every thing. In his very first World Collection at-bat, Pedroia led off Sport 1 of the 2007 Fall Basic with a solo residence run off Rockies starter Jeff Francis to offer the Sox a 1-0 lead. In Sport 1 of the 2013 World Collection, Pedroia went 2-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI.

However, once more, the accidents. Solely 18 of the 162 place gamers within the Corridor of Fame performed fewer than Pedroia’s 1,512 video games. Of these 18, solely 5 have been elected by the BBWAA, which is the more durable customary (despite the fact that all are handled equally in Cooperstown). These 5: Jackie Robinson, Hank Greenberg, Roy Campanella, Ralph Kiner and Mickey Cochrane. 

Robinson’s entry into the MLB ranks was, clearly, delayed. Campanella’s profession ended early after an vehicle accident left him in a wheelchair. Cochrane was executed at 34 after he was hit within the head with a fastball. Greenberg missed three full seasons to World Warfare II. Kiner retired at 32 due to a again harm. 

So there’s precedent for stars with shortened careers to be elected to the Corridor of Fame. 

Was Pedroia’s time on the sector worthy of Cooperstown? He has an MVP and two World Collection titles on his resume. And there’s no arguing his impression when wholesome. In his eight “full” seasons, his “worst” bWAR was 3.9, posted twice (139 video games in 2007, 135 video games in 2014). Within the three seasons he performed between 75 and 105 video games, his bWAR was at the very least 2.5. And perhaps it’s not value noting, however contemplating the gamers on the 2022 poll, there’s a refreshing lack of “yeah, however …” negatives to think about with Pedroia’s candidacy. 

Does Dustin Pedroia’s profession appear to be a “typical” Corridor of Famer’s profession? No, it doesn’t. However a really robust argument will be made that he does belong, or on the very least he deserves to stay round within the dialog for greater than only one 12 months on the poll. 

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