Three-time World Series champion Dustin Pedroia announces retirement

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Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia officially called it a career on Monday.

Pedroia, 37, spent his entire 17-year career in Boston’s organization and won three World Series titles with the club in 2007, ’13 and ’18. He was the only player to win Rookie of the Year (2007), Gold Glove and MVP awards (2008) plus a World Series championship in his first two full MLB seasons.

He is one of nine players to accrue all of those accolades within an entire playing career. The others are Hall of Famers Willie Mays, Frank Robinson, Johnny Bench and Cal Ripken Jr., plus Pete Rose, Thurman Munson, Albert Pujols, Buster Posey and Cody Bellinger.

Pedroia represented ‘grit, passion’ of Boston

Dustin Pedroia.
Dustin Pedroia announced his retirement on Monday. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

The club selected Pedroia in the second round of the 2004 June Draft. He made his major league debut on Aug. 22, 2006, at the age of 25 and played in 31 games that first season.

He went on to big-time success, hitting .303/.368/.447 from 2007 to 2016 with four All-Star nods and two World Series titles in the span. His 1,506 games played ranks 11th all-time over the club’s 120-year history. It’s second-most among Red Sox second basemen in history.

“Dustin came to represent the kind of grit, passion, and competitive drive that resonates with baseball fans everywhere and especially with Red Sox fans,” Red Sox principal owner John Henry said in a statement. “He played the game he loves in service to our club, its principles and in pursuit of championships. Most of all we are forever grateful to him for what he brought to our club and to our region as an important role model showing all of us how much one can accomplish with determination and hard work.”

Pedroia was named to four All-Star Game teams and won four Gold Gloves at second base (‘08,’11,’13-14). He also won the 2008 Silver Slugger award with a league-best 213 hits, 118 runs and 54 doubles. He led the league in runs again the next season with 115.

Over his career Pedroia batted .299 with a .365 on-base percentage. He had 140 home runs, 394 doubles, 725 RBI, 922 runs scored and 138 stolen bases.

Pedroia’s impact on community

Pedroia was a star for the club off the diamond as well. He launched the Pedroia’s Platoon program in 2004 to invite military members to Fenway Park for a game and meet-and-greet. He was commonly involved in the club’s community programs, including the Jimmy Fund to support cancer care and research at Boston's Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

“Dustin has been an integral part of our club from draft day through retirement,” Red Sox chairman Tom Werner said in a statement. “During his time with the Red Sox, we have had the opportunity to see Dustin evolve into one of the best second basemen in the game as a player and watch him grow as a husband to Kelli and father to his three incredible children. The full impact of the Pedroia family extends well beyond the walls of Fenway Park and into the Boston community through their work with military families and the Jimmy Fund. We congratulate Dustin on a tremendous career, and thank him and Kelli for their contributions to our club and our community.”

Pedroia and his wife, Kelli, have three sons, Dylan, Cole and Brooks.

Knee injuries keep Pedroia off field

Pedroia hurt his left leg when Manny Machado slid into him as he was catching a throw at second. It was shortly after he had off-season knee surgery and he’s had multiple surgeries since 2017.

In August 2019, he underwent knee joint preservation surgery, an alternative to knee replacement. It kept him from playing for Boston in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. He announced in January 2020 he had suffered a “significant setback.” His last game was April 17, 2019.

He has said he’ll need a knee replacement one day.

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