Petey chasing a mirage?

Koufax

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According to ESPN, Dustin Pedroia is hoping to return next year after playing in just nine games during the past two seasons because of his injured left knee. "Every indication I've gotten is that he's feeling good and intending on playing," Chaim Bloom, Boston's new chief baseball officer, said Monday after arriving at the annual general managers meetings.

So what are the oddsmakers saying about that possibility?
 

santadevil

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I agree, it's likely a long shot

But if he feels he can do it, I fully want to give him that opportunity
His mind is still in the game obviously, so let's see what he can do

Maybe we'll get one last season in the sun out of him

Pedey is one of my favorite players ever, right behind Pedro, so I'm a little biased here
 

strek1

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Given his personality I would have expected nothing else. He's going to bust his ass to try to go out on his terms. Yeah it's a long shot but if there's is a way he will find it.
 

Van Everyman

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Reads to me more like a direct response to those who believe that Pedey should just forfeit his guaranteed money in light of the luxury tax problems because he was just going to retire anyway. Particularly given that it doesn’t appear anything has actually improved about his health.
 

keninten

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This spring having Pedey busting his ass and trying to get to where he was 3 years ago. Can only help inspire the team next year, Go Pedey!!!!
 

CanvasAlley

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No matter what we feel about his chances (which seem a bit slim), he has earned the right to try. As @keninten stated above, he can only inspire the team. What an amazing story if he can make it happen, eh?
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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There is no downside to Pedroia busting his ass trying to come back this spring. I hope he succeeds. It would solve one of their positional question marks this winter.

Granted, there's no way a sane front office is going to bank on Pedroia being the regular starter at second, but at least if he's attempting to come back, they're not going to go crazy trying to bring in a new 2B at an unnecessarily high cost. They'll take a similar approach to what they did in 2019 and have a multitude of in-house plan Bs like Hernandez, Lin, Chavis, maybe a re-signed Holt.
 

RetractableRoof

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There is no downside to Pedroia busting his ass trying to come back this spring. I hope he succeeds. It would solve one of their positional question marks this winter.

Granted, there's no way a sane front office is going to bank on Pedroia being the regular starter at second, but at least if he's attempting to come back, they're not going to go crazy trying to bring in a new 2B at an unnecessarily high cost. They'll take a similar approach to what they did in 2019 and have a multitude of in-house plan Bs like Hernandez, Lin, Chavis, maybe a re-signed Holt.
That is the real downside to him chasing a mirage. The question mark remains at second base even if he manages to make it back initially. It leaves the team covering the position twice when building the roster/planning. It forces them to at least have someone in mind who can play there long term should he get 10 games in and need to shut it down. If he makes it out of ST then they still need to make sure they can cover him for maintenance days - there's no way he can play close to a full schedule. In some ways that could be good - it keeps your utility guy(s) in play, but could be bad for overexposing them.

That said, he's earned the chance to compete for the job and I hope he's successful to the extent that he and the team can realistically hope for.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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That is the real downside to him chasing a mirage. The question mark remains at second base even if he manages to make it back initially. It leaves the team covering the position twice when building the roster/planning. It forces them to at least have someone in mind who can play there long term should he get 10 games in and need to shut it down. If he makes it out of ST then they still need to make sure they can cover him for maintenance days - there's no way he can play close to a full schedule. In some ways that could be good - it keeps your utility guy(s) in play, but could be bad for overexposing them.

That said, he's earned the chance to compete for the job and I hope he's successful to the extent that he and the team can realistically hope for.
There's an easy solution to the "downside". If they don't want the question marks, they can simply release him and pursue alternatives. It's sunk money either way.

But they've gone on record saying they'd like to reduce payroll. I think their preferred path is likely going with some combination of Hernandez, Lin, Chavis and maybe a lottery ticket veteran (Dozier? Gennett?) regardless of Pedroia, so Pedroia's attempted comeback gives them cover to that end.
 

EdRalphRomero

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There's an easy solution to the "downside". If they don't want the question marks, they can simply release him and pursue alternatives. It's sunk money either way.

But they've gone on record saying they'd like to reduce payroll. I think their preferred path is likely going with some combination of Hernandez, Lin, Chavis and maybe a lottery ticket veteran (Dozier? Gennett?) regardless of Pedroia, so Pedroia's attempted comeback gives them cover to that end.
Neither is necessary. The Front Office recognizes that the odds of him returning and carrying the load are very, very, VERY small. The cost is sunk and guaranteed. So you encourage Pedroia along the way. You tell him how much he means to the team and the town. And you 100% plan as if he will never play again for the Sox. I don't think they need to pretend he is coming back to go cheap at 2b. Of all the reasons we're gonna be frustrated as a fan-base, that's gonna be relatively low. Whatever plan they develop at 2b will have no assumption of any contribution from Dustin Pedroia.
 

MuzzyField

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The only downside to this is Dustin turning a successful quality-of-life procedure that apparently has his knee feeling great and turning it into an early knee replacement.

Isn't the professional medical opinion here that the procedure didn't repair his knee for the rigors of professional athletics? Dustin can bust his ass all he wants, I just hope his knee is up to the challenge.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
There's an easy solution to the "downside". If they don't want the question marks, they can simply release him and pursue alternatives. It's sunk money either way.

But they've gone on record saying they'd like to reduce payroll. I think their preferred path is likely going with some combination of Hernandez, Lin, Chavis and maybe a lottery ticket veteran (Dozier? Gennett?) regardless of Pedroia, so Pedroia's attempted comeback gives them cover to that end.
Dozier and Gennett are question marks, but not really lottery tickets. They're both starting second basemen who had All-Star caliber years quite recently. They won't cost much, certainly not compared to what their price tag would have been a year or two ago, but they'll cost enough (well, Dozier will, anyway--Gennett might be a better bargain) that you don't make that investment unless you expect them to start for you. Signing either of those guys, or Schoop, is sending a clear message that they are skeptics on Pedroia's comeback. And for that reason, I'd expect them to be reluctant to sign here while the official word is that the Sox are expecting Pedroia back. Calling that an awkward situation would be putting it mildly. Can you imagine the post-signing interviews? "I'm really stoked about the prospect of being Dustin Pedroia's backup....whaddaya mean my nose is growing?"

In this context, if the Sox decide to plug the right-side hole(s) with a cheap FA, it might make more sense to look at a 1B like Smoak, and take advantage of Chavis' defensive versatility by penciling him in at 2B (where he seemed adequate last year) when the Pedroia experiment fails.
 

lexrageorge

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The only downside to this is Dustin turning a successful quality-of-life procedure that apparently has his knee feeling great and turning it into an early knee replacement.

Isn't the professional medical opinion here that the procedure didn't repair his knee for the rigors of professional athletics? Dustin can bust his ass all he wants, I just hope his knee is up to the challenge.
While I will always defer to the professional medical opinions, it should be noted that all of those opinions start with "I don't have first hand knowledge of Pedroia's medical history. But, based on what we know publicly...". Neither the Red Sox nor Pedroia are obligated to reveal the details of his history and the procedure; in fact, the team cannot do so. But those details can matter, and often do, when it comes to predicting the range of outcomes for a specific individual.

The team's trainers and medical staff have the responsibility of notifying Pedroia of the risks of attempting a comeback and the possible outcomes. If there was zero chance of a return and a 100% chance of needing a replacement knee, the team would probably say "sorry, but not on our dime". But absolutes are rare in medicine, and so I'm guessing all anyone can do is ensure Pedroia is making an informed decision.

I agree that the front office should operate as if he's not going to be able to see the field in 2020. If he unexpectedly returns and mashes down in AAA while playing consecutive games for a few weeks, that's a solvable problem.
 

Teachdad46

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Dustin thrives on proving doubters wrong. Let me offer him some incentive: Dustin Pedroia is not going to play anything close to meaningful innings at second base in 2020 or beyond. Ain't happenin'. I do hope he does not wreck his chances for living a pain-free life once he leaves baseball.
 

bankshot1

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I hope Dustin Pedroia can resume his professional baseball career, and I admire his determination, but this reminds me of David Wright's several comebacks from his injuries which eventually led to a premature retirement from the game. If that's the case with Pedroia, I think he desrves one last AB at Fenway.
 

steveluck7

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of course he is entitled to make every attempt to come back, etc. but am I mis-remembering a story, relayed by Jerry Remy during last season in which Remy spoke with Pedroia about the long-term quality of life stuff as it related to his knees. I remember Dustin specifically mentioned that he had to change all of the flooring in his house because it hurt too much to walk on.
Now, maybe he's feeling better and thinks he can give it a shot but that story seemed less about baseball and more about life, at least the way remy told it.
 

yecul

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His mindset would not allow for this, but I hope he'd consider that even if he can make it there is a good chance the wear and tear plus his age and missed time will make finding success more challenging. It would be a shame if he beats the odds to make it back to the team and somehow remain healthy only to struggle.

That said, he's earned plenty of rope in my book, and whatever decision he makes I hope he nails it.
 

Green Monster

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I have never seen the wording for an injury clause on a major league contract so this might be a stretch, but is it possible that this is in anyway contract related....ie, he must show reasonable effort to rehab an injury in order to collect his salary....In which case he is doing/saying what he is contractually obligated to do even though he knows a return is extremely unlikely??
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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He has every right and obligation to chase this mirage and come back. As noted above, it's on the FO to ensure that they have an adequate backup plan in place if/when this comeback fails. If the Sox don't want to have him try to come back, they can release him and wish him well.

Even if his knee is to the point where it's going to affect the quality of his life post-baseball....it's his life and his choice to do so.
 

InstaFace

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The only downside to this is Dustin turning a successful quality-of-life procedure that apparently has his knee feeling great and turning it into an early knee replacement.

Isn't the professional medical opinion here that the procedure didn't repair his knee for the rigors of professional athletics? Dustin can bust his ass all he wants, I just hope his knee is up to the challenge.
Yeah that was @DaveRoberts'Shoes saying that the procedure he went through was so that he can walk without pain when he's 50, not that he can return to starting at 2B in The Show.

This strikes me as pro-forma. He's under contract and he has pride, so he's going to "try", but nobody's going to ask him to really try because it's not in his long-term best interests and probably wouldn't work anyway.
 

chawson

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Nothing against Pedey whatsoever, but this seems like lip service to me, a necessary line to forestall questions about his contract — which he deserves every penny of — during a looming austerity program. He can’t say ‘I’m done’.

But yes, the Sox may concentrate efforts to acquire a 2B/1B type rather than a pure 2B in case he can take the field. In order of preference, that’s Brad Miller, Brock Holt, Wilmer Flores and Logan Forsythe to me.
 

Jim Ed Rice in HOF

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Rob Bradford with a Pedroia interview in a story on EEI.com along with audio from the Bradfo Show podcast.

Pedroia could very easily just ride off into the sunset, collect his checks and not bust his ass to try and do this but I don't think his DNA would allow it. There's a bunch of work he has to do just to get his leg strength back without even taking into account the potential for further knee issues and he makes it sound like it's a guarantee he's getting a knee replacement. I just hope that when he comes back for the 20th anniversary celebration of the '07 WS team he's not limping around in pain because of all this.
 

Koufax

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Plenty of folks with knee replacements walk just fine.
 

steveluck7

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Has there been any talk in the media about the Red Sox "trying" to get pedey to retire or anything? I ask because i saw Tomase on NBCSN Boston last night. They were talking about this latest news from pedroia and all of a sudden Tomase kind of ranted about the team having no right to ask pedroia to retire or somehow take less and that pedroia deserves every penny.
I hadn't seen or heard anything outside of members here asking about options and certainly nothing from the actual organization. Maybe Tomase lurks here?
 

Jim Ed Rice in HOF

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I don't think he can just ride off, he has to express an interest in continuing to play. If he retires he won't get his money.
A bad choice of words on my part and yes I get that if he retires he doesn't get his money (but what if he decides to coach?) :bagd:. What I'm trying to convey is that he could probably get by with a medical excuse to sit out the rest of his contract if he chose to.
.
 

reggiecleveland

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Reads to me more like a direct response to those who believe that Pedey should just forfeit his guaranteed money in light of the luxury tax problems because he was just going to retire anyway. Particularly given that it doesn’t appear anything has actually improved about his health.
This is where the thread should have ended. He is going to get paid, end of story. He may do some perfunctory training, but he's done.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
What I'm trying to convey is that he could probably get by with a medical excuse to sit out the rest of his contract if he chose to..
And this is what happens if (as most of us expect) his attempt fizzles before Opening Day, right? He goes on the 60-day IL for the next two years, collects his remaining checks, and retires on Nov. 1, 2021.
 

lexrageorge

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Has there been any talk in the media about the Red Sox "trying" to get pedey to retire or anything? I ask because i saw Tomase on NBCSN Boston last night. They were talking about this latest news from pedroia and all of a sudden Tomase kind of ranted about the team having no right to ask pedroia to retire or somehow take less and that pedroia deserves every penny.
I hadn't seen or heard anything outside of members here asking about options and certainly nothing from the actual organization. Maybe Tomase lurks here?
The source matters in cases like this.

Has someone in the Red Sox front office at some point in a private conversation expressed a desire that Pedroia retire? Wouldn't surprise me. Has anyone asked his agent "off the record" over a beer? Probably, as that is part of the business. The team personnel have a fiduciary duty to the team first. And the team is within their rights to instruct Pedroia to work with the training and medical staff on a rehab plan. Pedroia is not some 20 y/o looking to break into the big leagues; it's up to him to determine what's best for him.
 

Patek's 3 Dingers

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The source matters in cases like this.

Has someone in the Red Sox front office at some point in a private conversation expressed a desire that Pedroia retire? Wouldn't surprise me. Has anyone asked his agent "off the record" over a beer? Probably, as that is part of the business. The team personnel have a fiduciary duty to the team first. And the team is within their rights to instruct Pedroia to work with the training and medical staff on a rehab plan. Pedroia is not some 20 y/o looking to break into the big leagues; it's up to him to determine what's best for him.
There's no clause in Pedroia's contract that the Sox don't have to pay him if he can't play because of injury. He's not going to retire and the Sox aren't going to ask him to. The unknown is whether Pedroia really believes he's going to be successful coming back or whether the Sox expect him to limp through 2 years of rehab.

The correct thing for the Sox to do is give Pedroia the option of not playing without having to retire. It's cruel to expect him to do further damage to his knee when there is such a small chance of him returning to the major leagues.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
The correct thing for the Sox to do is give Pedroia the option of not playing without having to retire. It's cruel to expect him to do further damage to his knee when there is such a small chance of him returning to the major leagues.
It's not "the correct thing to do." It's what they have to do. If he can't get healthy enough to play, he can't, and he doesn't have to retire, and they still have to pay him.

But I think they do have the right to expect him to make a good-faith effort to get healthy enough to play before concluding that he can't. That's not "cruel," it's simply fair. If Pedroia doesn't want to retire, that's fine, but if he's not retired then he has a contractual obligation to render playing services if he can, right? Which in turn suggests an obligation, when disabled, to do his best to become un-disabled as long as the contract remains in effect. In Pedroia's case I don't think that's a concern, because it's hard to imagine him doing anything else.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Someone up thread I think came up with the best situation here- sign a good 1B that can at least platoon with Chavis. Additionally...Sign Holt as the Utility Guy he's always been.
 

Patek's 3 Dingers

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It's not "the correct thing to do." It's what they have to do. If he can't get healthy enough to play, he can't, and he doesn't have to retire, and they still have to pay him.

But I think they do have the right to expect him to make a good-faith effort to get healthy enough to play before concluding that he can't. That's not "cruel," it's simply fair. If Pedroia doesn't want to retire, that's fine, but if he's not retired then he has a contractual obligation to render playing services if he can, right? Which in turn suggests an obligation, when disabled, to do his best to become un-disabled as long as the contract remains in effect. In Pedroia's case I don't think that's a concern, because it's hard to imagine him doing anything else.
Of course the contract requires Pedroia to play for the Sox or at least attempt to do so and it also requires the Sox to continue paying him. However, there is no benifit to the team of merely having Pedroia trying to comeback.

In my opinion, there is close to a zero percent chance of Pedroia playing for the Sox. It's up to him if he wants to continue trying to comeback, but it's unlikely he can help the team.

If I was the Sox, I wouldn't want him to risk further damage to his knee for what seems like a pipe dream. However, I don't have access to the medical information about the condition of his knee so I might be overly pessimistic.
 

RIFan

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Reminds me of Cam Neely in '98 when he gave it one last try. Guys like Pedroia don't want to deal with "what ifs". He'll need to get on the field and know for sure that he can't do it. As I recall Neely had a good first couple of days on the ice and excitement started to build that he might make it back. It didn't last and he said at the time
“I know how I’m feeling now, I know how I felt yesterday and I know how I don’t want to feel,” Neely said after yesterday’s practice. “I’m young, and I don’t want to be struggling at 45 to be getting around.”
I think Pedroia will have a similar epiphany after spending some time at camp and finding out his knee's limitations are too much to overcome.

Neely article: https://www.seacoastonline.com/article/19981117/SPORTS/311179992
 

nattysez

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Someone up thread I think came up with the best situation here- sign a good 1B that can at least platoon with Chavis. Additionally...Sign Holt as the Utility Guy he's always been.
They do not have money to do any of those things if they are staying under $208m unless the fourth and fifth starters and most of the bullpen are coming from the minors or the scrapheap (unless they trade JDM and Mookie).

Mike Krukow has often said that if you quit before you are sure you can't play anymore, you'll always wonder if you could've squeezed out one more year. He also says that once you're done, you really miss the game and will always wonder if you could've played a little longer if you don't give it everything you've got. So I think it's natural (and probably wise) for Pedey to do everything he can to play, even if it's not great for the Sox in the short-term (assuming he can't actually play anymore).
 

Manramsclan

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I listened to the beginning of the Bradfo Sho podcast with Pedroia last night.

Essentially, what he said was that the prescribed recovery for his first surgery was not satisfactory for a professional athlete (pool, resistance bands etc.) which led to the development of bone spurs. The bone spurs were causing him pain and restricting his movement.
The most recent procedure was to remove the bone spurs, which allow him to put more torque on the knee and as Dustin put it, "be me" on the field.

Dustin is not a doctor, but it did sound convincing that the knee feels better than it did last year. It also debunks the narrative that the most recent procedure was "just a quality of life" procedure because of its' relation to the previous surgery.

I really want to believe all of this, so I'm biased. Essentially though, how Dustin felt last year when he did everything right to his knowledge and the knee still hurt is not as important how Dustin feels now. Last year Dustin didn't feel like he could play. Now he does.
 

JBJ_HOF

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It also debunks the narrative that the most recent procedure was "just a quality of life" procedure because of its' relation to the previous surgery.
He said his first goal right now is quality of life and at some point he will need a total knee replacement.
 

chrisfont9

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Reads to me more like a direct response to those who believe that Pedey should just forfeit his guaranteed money in light of the luxury tax problems because he was just going to retire anyway. Particularly given that it doesn’t appear anything has actually improved about his health.
It doesn't say anything about his actual health, period. Not super helpful. For the record, he is coming off of:
- Cartilage replacement surgery, where they inserted cartilage from a cadaver since his had deteriorated. He said this year that it took and felt better. But then...
- Joint preservation surgery, where it sounds like they go in and clean out any pieces of bone or tissue that aren't clean (?). That also sounds pretty minor, but I guess it comes in varying levels of severity so we'll see.
Does he just recover and get good again? Or is this all a bit of a house of cards masking some other weakness that will eventually undermine him? He did say in August that there was one more surgery (at least) that he could try if this doesn't get him back to normal.
 
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sean1562

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even if he does come back, most of his value came from his defense. He hasnt been a great hitter since 2016, and that was his only really great season after 2011. I said that I wasnt terribly interested in Brian Dozier since he seems washed up, but his production last season is probably best case scenario for Pedroia. I dont think he'd sign here if we have any stated notion of giving Dustin the starting job next year
 

chrisfont9

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even if he does come back, most of his value came from his defense. He hasnt been a great hitter since 2016, and that was his only really great season after 2011. I said that I wasnt terribly interested in Brian Dozier since he seems washed up, but his production last season is probably best case scenario for Pedroia. I dont think he'd sign here if we have any stated notion of giving Dustin the starting job next year
If he can go, they have to play him. Otherwise they'd have to pay to bring in someone, right? Even with Chavis and Dalbec they still need at least one more infielder right now.

Also washed up is a bit strong; his lowest OPS+ of late was 101, and 99 before that; every other year he's made a positive offensive contribution prior to the injuries.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
Also washed up is a bit strong; his lowest OPS+ of late was 101, and 99 before that; every other year he's made a positive offensive contribution prior to the injuries.
I'm pretty sure he meant Dozier was washed up, not Pedroia. Though I don't think it's reasonable to call Dozier that; he's just declining, which is not the same thing. He was a league-average hitter and a fringe-average fielder last year. That's unexciting, but pennant races can hinge on teams' ability to plug holes with players that are good enough to be called unexciting.
 
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...every other year he's made a positive offensive contribution prior to the injuries.
In his 14-year career, he has only played in 150+ games five times. Overall, he has averaged playing in two-thirds of the games. Even if one omits his last two seasons, he has only averaged playing in 77.3% of the games. Back when they extended his contract, I felt he was the type of player whose performance would drop suddenly as he aged and that a trade would have been a better move.
 

chrisfont9

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I'm pretty sure he meant Dozier was washed up, not Pedroia. Though I don't think it's reasonable to call Dozier that; he's just declining, which is not the same thing. He was a league-average hitter and a fringe-average fielder last year. That's unexciting, but pennant races can hinge on teams' ability to plug holes with players that are good enough to be called unexciting.
Ah, right, sorry. Reading comprehension was always where I got tripped up in standardized testing...
 

Plympton91

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In his 14-year career, he has only played in 150+ games five times. Overall, he has averaged playing in two-thirds of the games. Even if one omits his last two seasons, he has only averaged playing in 77.3% of the games. Back when they extended his contract, I felt he was the type of player whose performance would drop suddenly as he aged and that a trade would have been a better move.
Lemme guess, you’re someone who plays a lot of fantasy baseball, right?
 

j-man

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i love this guy mindset but bad knees are tricky i assume he has a family u dont want to cause more damge to the knee