Red Sox

Will Middlebrooks explained why the Red Sox should retire Dustin Pedroia’s number

"That's how much he meant to the city of Boston."

Will Middlebrooks is congratulated by Dustin Pedroia after scoring on a Jacoby Ellsbury double against the Kansas City Royals in 2013. Dave Kaup/Reuters

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Will Middlebrooks adamantly believes the Red Sox should retire Dustin Pedroia’s number someday.

Middlebrooks, who played three years with Pedroia, praised the second baseman when Pedroia formally announced his retirement Monday. He noted that even though Pedroia didn’t have 2,000 hits, and likely won’t make the Hall of Fame, he deserves to be up there with David Ortiz, Jim Rice, Carl Yastrzemski, and the rest of the Red Sox greats.

“That’s how much he meant to the city of Boston, the organization of the Red Sox, to me, to every teammate that ever was lucky enough to play alongside Dustin Pedroia,” Middlebrooks said.


Middlebrooks, discussing the situation with his wife, Jenny Dell, on CBS Sports HQ, said Pedroia leaves a legacy that’s much bigger than just his numbers. He said that Pedroia is listed at 5-feet-8-inches or 5-feet-9-inches, when in reality, he’s probably 5-feet-6-inches and is 175 or 180 pounds “soaking wet.”

Given Pedroia’s stature, Middlebrooks said he marveled at his ability to smoke balls over the Green Monster and consistently make game-changing plays on a daily basis. He said he considers himself “very lucky” that he was able to play with Pedroia from 2012-2014.

“In the age we’re in with baseball now, and everything being so analytically driven and measured, there’s no instrument that could accurately measure how big his heart was, and how much he loved the game, and how hard he played it,” Middlebrooks said. “He really defied the odds, as far as what he was given.”

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