Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia has suffered a “significant setback” while rehabbing his left knee injury, a team spokesman confirmed.
“As a result, his status for spring training is uncertain,” said Kevin Gregg.
Gregg did not elaborate on the nature of this setback, which exacerbated an injury that has plagued Pedroia for several campaigns.
The 2008 American League MVP’s knee troubles started in 2017, when his left knee was injured in a play involving Baltimore’s Manny Machado. Pedroia underwent surgery in October of that year.
He also underwent a joint preservation procedure in July 2018 to remove scar tissue and another in August 2019, in which bone spurs were removed.
Pedroia’s contract includes salaries of $13 million this season and $12 million in 2021, and he counts $13.28 million toward Boston’s luxury tax payroll.
Pedroia is a four-time All-Star, was the 2007 American League Rookie of the Year and has played for two World Series championship teams in 2007 and 2013.
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The news comes at a difficult time for the Red Sox organization, which is adjusting to a new head of baseball operations and lost manager Alex Cora after he was implicated in the Astros’ sign-stealing scheme during their run to the 2017 World Series title.
After the surgery, Pedroia’s mindset shifted, and he indicated to the Red Sox that he hoped to return to the field and become an everyday player again. But news of his latest setback brings up the question of retirement, given that he is now three campaigns removed from a fully healthy season, when he played 154 matches for Boston in 2016.
Red Sox general manager Brian O’Halloran expressed optimism for Pedroia’s return as recently as the GM meetings in November.
“He’s been working out and doing well by his own account and we’re going to talk to him and learn more,” O’Halloran said. “I don’t think anything specifically has changed. I think it’s more that time has passed and he’s been feeling better.”
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