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Dustin Pedroia on riding the batting order wave: ‘Surf’s up, dude’

03.05.12 at 2:32 pm ET
By

Dustin Pedroia

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Dustin Pedroia, who is not playing in the Red Sox’ game against the Twins Monday night, said he has not talked to Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine about where he might hit in the lineup. The second baseman did have a message if moved to the leadoff spot.

“I embrace everything,” he said.

Pedroia admitted that he would go into any such endeavor with a different mindset than the last time he manned the top spot, which was a 26-game stretch from May 31-June 28 in which he hit just .214. After that stint he admitted that he was trying to take a different approach because of the spot in the order.

“Absolutely,” said Pedroia when asked if he would be heading into the leadoff spot with a different approach than his previous stints.”I’ve hit leadoff a lot in my life. I hit leadoff in high school, college, and ’07 when we won the World Series. I can definitely hit leadoff. Whatever they ask me to do I’m going to do. If [Jacoby Ellsbury] needs to drop down to hit some homers with more guys on base, or whatever the thought process is, that’s what I’m willing to do, and that’s what he’s willing to do. It doesn’t matter. I’ve grown up a lot. I’m a lot smarter offensive player than I was a few years ago.”

When reminded of his struggles during the ’09 stretch at the leadoff spot, Pedroia chalked it up as an example of how uneven a baseball season can be.

“I hit. 214? It’s good because if they would have kept me in another 20 games I would have hit .414,” he said. “Ride the wave. It’s a wave, dude, How’s a heart beat go? It goes up and down, just like baseball. If you flatline you’re dead. If you flatline in baseball, I’ve never seen it in baseball. Ride the wave, dude. Surf is up.”

Oh, and here’s the lineup for the game over at Hammond Stadium, in which Clay Buchholz and Vincente Padilla will both pitch:

Iglesias SS, Sweeney RF, Youkilis 3B, Ortiz 1B, McDonald DH, Kroeger 1B, Shoppach C, Punto 2B, Repko CF.

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