In honor of his jersey number, here are 15 of Pedroia’s top moments from his illustrious career with the Red Sox, in chronological order.
The first hit -- Aug. 22, 2006
The Red Sox had just suffered a humiliating five-game sweep at the hands of the Yankees that effectively ended their chances of making the postseason. The next day, for the start of a West Coast trip in Anaheim, the team looked to the future by recalling Pedroia from Triple-A. In the second at-bat of his debut, facing Joe Saunders, Pedroia roped a single up the middle. It was the first of 1,805 knocks for Pedroia in his career.
Giant hitting display -- June 15, 2007
After a slow start to his eventual American League Rookie of the Year season, Pedroia started to hit his stride. Never was that more apparent than in this home Interleague contest against the Giants, when Pedroia went 5-for-5 with a homer and five RBIs in a 10-2 victory for the Sox. It was the first of five times in his career Pedroia belted five hits in a game.
Web gem saves no-no -- Sept. 1, 2007
Making his second Major League start, Clay Buchholz was about to do the unthinkable and throw a no-hitter. But it wouldn’t have happened without some masterful glove work by Pedroia. Miguel Tejada hit a rocket up the middle and Pedroia dove and snared it behind the second-base bag and came up firing in time to get the out at first to keep Buchholz’s no-hitter intact.
Pedroia breaks open Game 7 -- Oct. 21, 2007
Down 3-1 against the Indians in the AL Championship Series, the Red Sox rallied to send the series to a Game 7 at an electric Fenway Park. The action was tense, until Pedroia allowed the Red Sox to breathe. His two-run shot over the Monster in the bottom of the seventh opened Boston’s lead to 5-2. They went on to win, 11-2.
Homer in first World Series at-bat -- Oct. 24, 2007
What, you thought the rookie was going to be nervous in his first World Series game? Taking the first at-bat by a Red Sox player in the Fall Classic in the bottom of the first, Pedroia smacked one that just cleared the Monster against Rockies lefty Jeff Francis. Two days later, the diminutive second baseman was stunned when a security guard outside the clubhouse in Denver wouldn’t let Pedroia in because he forgot his ID. “Go ask Jeff [bleeping] Francis who I am,” said Pedroia, who led his team to a four-game sweep.
Cinco de Pedroia -- Aug. 12, 2008
Though David Ortiz was the early story in this memorable 19-17 slugfest win over the Rangers when he smashed two home runs in the first inning, Pedroia was the man the Rangers couldn’t handle all night. The right-handed-hitting machine went 5-for-5 and scored five times.
Savage mode against White Sox -- Aug. 29-30, 2008
How hot did Pedroia get during the pennant race of his AL MVP season? Hot enough to scorch the White Sox with back-to-back four-hit games. Impressively, his second four-hit game came while batting cleanup for the first time in his career. Pedroia even got intentionally walked that night in the fourth spot. “I never thought I would walk a jockey,” quipped White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen.
Opening Night equalizer -- April 4, 2010
The Red Sox and Yankees had the Opening Night stage to themselves when they opened the 2010 MLB season on this unseasonably warm night at Fenway. The rivals traded haymakers all night. Pedroia sent Fenway into a frenzy with his game-tying, two-run homer in the bottom of the seventh. The Sox had trailed early on, 5-1, but they rallied for a 9-7 victory.
Pedroia dodges extras in national showdown -- June 19, 2010
What a FOX Game of the Week this was -- Red Sox-Dodgers. There was star power on both sides of the field, and also Manny Ramirez’s first return to Boston since being traded to the Dodgers two years earlier. But it was Pedroia who stole the show when he delivered his first career walk-off hit -- an RBI single to right in the bottom of the ninth for a 5-4 Sox win.
Pedroia torments Rockies again -- June 24, 2010
As if the Rockies didn’t endure enough damage from Pedroia in the 2007 World Series. Back in the Rocky Mountains for the first time in three years, Pedroia announced his presence with authority, producing the most dominant game of his career. All he did was go 5-for-5 with a career-high three homers while totaling 15 total bases. The third homer couldn’t have come at a better time -- a two-run shot that broke a tie in the top of the 13th inning. Boston won, 13-11.
Sweet 16th for Pedroia, Sox -- July 17, 2011
On Sunday Night Baseball, the Red Sox and Rays didn’t score for 15 tension-filled innings at Tropicana Field. Pedroia changed that in the top of the 16th with a two-out RBI single to right to deliver Boston the 1-0 victory. The contest dragged on for so long that Josh Beckett even came up with a new nickname for Pedroia, dubbing him, “The Muddy Chicken” to reporters in his interview with the media that night. The nickname stuck -- for a few days. Then he went back to being “The Laser Show”.
Century-mark slam -- May 2, 2014
When Pedroia stepped into the batters’ box in the bottom of the sixth inning on a Friday night at Fenway against the Athletics, he hadn’t homered in 160 at-bats, dating back to Sept. 17 of the previous season. That made this one that much sweeter. Especially since it was a grand slam, and also the 100th home run of Pedroia’s career, leading the Sox to a 7-1 win.
Trade deadline stress reliever -- July 31, 2016
With the Red Sox in a bit of a funk and the entire baseball operations staff plotting potential moves in a suite behind home plate in Anaheim, Pedroia made everyone breathe a little easier. With two outs in the ninth and Boston down, 3-1, Pedroia unloaded for a three-run homer. The Sox scored five in the ninth and went on to win the AL East title.
White-hot Pedroia caps 11-for-11 stretch -- Aug. 27, 2016
Of all the hot streaks Pedroia had in his career, this three-game stretch against the Rays and Royals might have been the hottest. After ripping a hit in his final three at-bats in a 2-1 loss to the Rays, Pedroia greeted the defending World Series champion Royals with a hit in his first eight at-bats of a weekend series at Fenway Park. The 11-for-11 stretch at last ended when Pedroia hit into a double play in his fifth at bat of an 8-3 triumph over the Royals.
Pedroia plays pinball in Texas -- July 3, 2017
Though Pedroia played on one healthy knee for most of the 2017 season, he still managed to do some special things. Take, for example, this night in Arlington against the Rangers, when Pedroia made one of the most memorable defensive plays of his career in the bottom of the ninth inning of a tie game. On a slow roller by Carlos Gómez, Red Sox third baseman Deven Marrero made an errant throw to first. The ball took a wicked bounce off the side wall and Pedroia dove to retrieve it and fired to first, where Gomez was caught retreating back to the base. The Red Sox went on to win, 7-5, in 11 innings.