They handed it to the little man this time. Dustin Pedroia, all four feet of him, has won the AL MVP award in only his second major league season. Congrats, Dusty.
As a fan, there’s not enough you can say about Dustin. He’s awesome, he’s gritty, he’s small, he’s funny, he’s balding at age 25 and not exactly a sight to see, but his baseball game is beautiful. He’s so intense at every at bat, every inning, every pitch, that he gets you rocking in your seat, expecting something big to happen.
But at the same time, it’s Dustin Pedroia. He isn’t big, he’s just multi-talented. Dustin won the Gold Glove and the Silver Slugger. He’s got the Rookie of the Year in his back pocket, played in the All-Star Game, has a World Series ring. All that’s left for him to do is get a Cy Young.
His numbers are so spread out that it’s hard to say “this statistic cemented the MVP for him.” Frankly, if this MVP award was about statistics, Dustin never would have won. Youk beats him in .OBS and .OPS. He only has 17 home runs and 83 RBIs. He stole 20 bases in 21 attempts. He had 6
errors on the season, which seems like a lot when you play in the same infield as Kevin Youkilis and Mike Lowell.
Dustin is so anti-statistic that he’s like a refuge from the overpaid, nonchalant ballplayers
these days. He’s no Rodriguez primadonna or Ramirez goof, but at the same time he isn’t a non-smiling J.D. Drew. He plays hard, he talks smack, he takes his paycheck without complaint. He’s a foot shorter than the rest of his teammates and, as showcased in March, isn’t even close to Jacoby in looks.
However, Dustin carried this team. He refused to lose at whatever he was doing, be it the game, the at-bat, the inning, the play, the steal, the game of cribbage in the clubhouse. He doesn’t give up, doesn’t sit down, doesn’t shut up.
For all this, he’s the American League MVP. He’s our little man, our team leprechaun, our Pedroia-the-Destroyah.
He better have a very large mantel at home.
All pictures from boston.com