Dustin Pedroia Undergoes Surgery on Knee Injury; Expected to Be Out 7 Months

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistOctober 25, 2017

BOSTON, MA - SEPTEMBER 13: Dustin Pedroia #15 of the Boston Red Sox reacts as rain falls during the seventh inning of a game against the Oakland Athletics on September 13, 2017 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images

Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia's injury-plagued 2017 led to offseason knee surgery for the 34-year-old. 

Per Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe, Pedroia had the procedure Wednesday. 

The Red Sox announced it was cartilage-restoration surgery, and they anticipate Pedroia will return to games in seven months, via Abraham

That timetable would have Pedroia back in Boston's lineup at the end of May. 

The veteran had a pair of stints on the disabled list in 2017 due to lingering inflammation after he underwent knee surgery last offseason.

Those problems may have sapped Pedroia's power in 2017. His .392 slugging percentage was his second-lowest in a full season, above only a .376 mark in 2014. He still hit well overall with a .293 batting average and .369 on-base percentage with more walks (49) than strikeouts (48). 

Pedroia has long been the on-field lifeblood of the Red Sox due to his leadership and hard-nosed play.

The 2008 American League MVP is a four-time All-Star, four-time Gold Glove winner and two-time World Series champion, and has played 12 years.

He remains one of the AL's most consistent players in terms of batting average and on-base percentage, and he still has plenty of pop in his bat when healthy, as evidenced by his 15 home runs in 2016.

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Even at his advanced age, Pedroia is a key player for Boston as a top-of-the-order presence for Mookie Betts and Hanley Ramirez to drive in. 

Boston is a deep team; however, it will be difficult to replace everything Pedroia brings if he misses extended time.

Assuming Pedroia starts 2018 on the disabled list, the Red Sox will have to figure out second base. Eduardo Nunez, who was acquired in a July trade, is scheduled to become a free agent. Brock Holt had a .548 OPS in 64 games last season. 

Although the Red Sox have enough talent in their lineup and among their pitching staff to enjoy success without Pedroia, he would be a huge missing piece as they attempt to make a run toward a championship in 2018.