With only 3 games in as many days left in April, the first month of this Red Sox season is coming to a close. The Red Sox are currently sitting on a 12-9 record, good enough for .5 games out of first place behind Baltimore (12-8). Although the pitching has been sneakily decent, the offense has come out firing and hasn't wavered.
Having scored 111 runs in the first 21 games, the Sox currently sit in 7th among all teams in runs scored. The Red Sox also rank in the top 5 for batting average, on base percentage and slugging percentage. Oddly enough, this team ranks 27th in homeruns, which means they're scoring their runs the old fashion way. It's no secret that the offense has been great, but who has been the best hitter on this team?
The easy, but unexpected answer is that little, short guy named Dustin Pedroia. After missing 96 games over the last 2 seasons, it is a pleasant surprise to see that Pedroia has bounced back. With the noise of Ortiz' last season and the development of players like Hanley Ramirez and Mookie Betts, Pedroia has been flying under the radar.
As of last night's game, Pedroia has made 90 plate appearances and has 30 hits for a .333 average, which leads the team among every day players. He's also hit for 6 doubles, 1 triple and 3 homeruns, 2 of which he hit last night against the Braves.
If you were to match up his stats with the other second baseman in the league, it would seem that Dustin Pedroia is back to his MVP ways. He currently leads all second baseman in hits with 30, with Houston's Jose Altuve sitting behind him at 29. Pedroia also ranks in the top 5 among second basemen in several categories including: Runs, Doubles, Average, OBP and OPS.
As is the case with a lot of Red Sox players lately, there have been talks of possible trades involving the second baseman. With the combination of age, a lengthy contract and the development of Yoan Moncada, many people were accepting the idea of moving the coveted 32-year-old.
However, with the April that Pedroia has had, he is slowly but surely winning back the hearts of the fans that have loved him since he joined the organization in 2006. While we would all love for him to take a page out of Tom Brady's book and play 10 more years, the truth is it doesn't seem too likely. For now, let's just revel in the fact that Pedroia is back, and let's sit back and enjoy the laser show.
By Matt Watts