Why despite loss Tuesday was a good day for Dustin Pedroia

Ryan Hannable
April 09, 2019 - 7:14 pm

It wasn’t exactly the game Dustin Pedroia envisioned, as he went 1-for-4 including hitting into a tough double-play in the Red Sox’ 7-5 loss in their home opener, but the Red Sox second baseman was just happy to be on the field.

Pedroia was activated off the injured list before the game as he was still working his way back from left knee inflammation and began the year in Single-A Greenville. It was the same knee that caused him to play just three games last season and miss a good chunk of 2017. The contest marked his first major league game in exactly 315 days.

"I felt good. It was great to be out there,” he said. “Obviously I wish we'd won. But it's been a long time since I've been able to do that and it was fun."

Pedroia added: "It was awesome. I mean, it kind of messed me up. My first couple at-bats I was trying too hard and I was kind of in a big spot. But no I appreciate it so much. I think everyone knows what I've been going through and trying to come back from. So it means a lot."

After missing so much time the past few years, he admitted he was a bit nervous.

“I was working for 16 months just to get ready to do this,” he said. “Last year I played three games and I don't feel like I did last year. I'm going to be fine. I'm going to be able to play. I was excited. I didn't sleep much. I enjoy playing and I enjoy being a Red Sox. So it was fun."

The Red Sox have a plan for him moving forward, which will be not playing every single day like he’s used to, but that will be the only way he will reach his ultimate goal of finishing out his contract with the Red Sox that goes through 2021.

“They never really put a day or a goal or anything like that,” he said. “The goal is to finish three years. That's the goal. But to be able to play at home in the home opener, it meant a lot to me. I feel like I accomplished something out of this. During the whole thing I haven't really had any good news or anything. Go see a doctor and he gives you bad news. At some point you want something good. So this meant a lot."

Related: This Red Sox team hardly resembles the one that earned those rings