Dustin Pedroia

Dustin Pedroia: Surgery possible for thumb/wrist inflammation he's been managing all year

September 09, 2014 - 7:39 pm
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Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia, who underwent an MRI on Tuesday that revealed inflammation in his left wrist (near the same thumb on which he had surgery last offseason), acknowledged that season-ending surgery is a possibility for the issue. The 30-year-old said that he will meet with club officials and medical personnel on Wednesday to decide the proper course of action. "There's getting rest, continue to play, or surgery. There's three things we could do," Pedroia said after the Sox' 4-1 loss. "We'll come up with a plan the best we can that's best for the team." Pedroia said that he's been dealing with discomfort for much of the year. His surgery to repair a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his left thumb last offseason required ongoing rehab that stretched into the start of the season. But when he was wiped out at second base on a double play early in the year (though he didn't identify a date, Pedroia was wrecked at second base by Brewers outfielder Carlos Gomez in the first home series of the year), he experienced discomfort that has lingered throughout the season and that has gotten worse recently. "Obviously I've been kind of dealing with it for most of the year, but I mean, that's the part of the job. The training staff and everyone's done a great job getting me out there. Obviously, dealing with little injuries and things like that, it's a part of it. You try to find a way to play through it," said Pedroia. "I fell early in the year, I got taken out at second, and you know, it's pretty inflamed. We tried to manage it the best we can, and it just gets to a point where obviously it hurts. It's tough going out there and trying to do what you're accustomed to doing and you can't. But I will soon." Pedroia is amidst one of the worst offensive seasons of his career. He's hitting .278 with a .337 OBP and .376 slugging mark, all of which would represent career lows. The injury to his lower hand on the bat, he acknowledged, has played a major role in his diminished performance, particularly his slugging ability. "You don't have your hand strength. You're not able to follow through the way you normally do. That makes it tough. You've got to try to find ways in other areas to help your team win," said Pedroia. "[Hands are] the most important part of my game. That's the tough part. One little thing here and there can affect you. But you get through it, and I'll be better for it. I've learned a lot." If there is a silver lining for the second baseman, it is that a surgery is expected to be relatively minor, as opposed to last offseason's surgery that required his thumb to remain immobilized for months. This year, if he does require surgery, he would recover in time for a normal offseason. "If there was a surgery it wouldn't be major. You know what I mean? It's one of those things that's kind of a release or something to get the inflammation out of there," said Pedroia. "If that were the case, I'd have a normal offseason and be able to lift weights, something that I didn't get a chance to do very much last offseason." Still, the reality is that two of the three possible scenarios that Pedroia now faces involve him not playing much, if at all, for the rest of 2014. The notion is a difficult one for him to stomach. "It's tough. You want to be out there playing. You know, obviously, I love playing baseball and love being out there with my teammates," said Pedroia. "I'll never pack it in. It means a lot to play baseball in the major leagues, especially with the Boston Red Sox. There shouldn't be one guy that thinks they're going to pack it in. We're here for each other, trying to play; it doesn't matter where we are in the standings."

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