Pedroia’s pain public after reporters reveal hidden injury

Published On May 30, 2013 | By Justin McGrail

It may come as a surprise to some, but it seems Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia has been playing with a thumb injury since Opening Day.

Pedroia reportedly tore his ulnar collateral ligament in his thumb when he slid head-first into first base on Opening Day against the New York Yankees. What makes the injury more unbelievable is that it came in the top of the ninth inning in which the Red Sox were winning handily, 8-2.

On April 26, Sox hitting coach Greg Colbrunn told the Boston Globe that Pedroia was playing hurt but the player and manager John Farrell both denied the claim.

Pedroia added, “We want medical stuff to stay private. Players are playing. No reason to talk about injuries and stuff like that.”

This isn’t the first time Pedroia hid an injury. Despite fracturing a finger, Pedroia insisted on staying in the lineup against the Yankees for the last two games of a season that saw the Sox finish last in the AL East because he said he owed it to the Baltimore Orioles to make the playoff race between the Orioles and Yankees as competitive as possible.

This year, Pedroia’s thumb injury injury doesn’t seem to be slowing him down. After consulting with doctors, he started all 54 games and has yet to concede an error. He also looks great at the plate, hitting .332 with a .419 on-base percentage. It’s especially impressive considering that last season, pitcher Andrew Bailey underwent surgery for a torn UCL in his thumb.

Pedroia’s tenacity was heralded by Farrell.

“He’ll fight you tooth and nail to stay in the lineup even if there’s things he’s dealing with,” Farrell said. “He sets a tone, not only performance but of grit and determination, and other guys feed off of that.”

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