BOSTON (CBS) – Dustin Pedroia appears to be back to his usual self as he addressed the media for the first time from Red Sox Spring Training in Fort Myers, Florida on Tuesday.
When asked by WBZ-TV’s Dan Roche if he did anything different during the off-season, Pedroia responded with a clever retort similar to those that have made him a fan favorite since 2007.
“Just straight body building,” Pedroia replied, asking Roche what he thought of the results.
But “Dusty Comedy” wasn’t done. He also took a shot at the team for spending money on a market research group two years ago, revealed in former manager Terry Francona’s new book, which told the team they needed to invest in “sexier” players like Pedroia.
“They didn’t need to hire a damn marketing team, I could have told them that for free,” he joked.
Pedroia said he hasn’t had time to read Francona’s book (co-authored by the Globe’s Dan Shaughnessy), though he doubts his former skipper did much of the writing anyways.
Pedroia On 2012, Looking Ahead To 2013:
If anything was apparent from Tuesday’s brief chat with the media, Pedroia is back to his joyful self. It’s a trait that was absent for most of the Red Sox’ dismal 2012 season, and the second baseman said it took some time this off-season to move on from the 69-93 campaign that left the Red Sox at home in October for the second straight season.
“There was a lot of frustration. It’s not fun coming to the field when you’re not winning every day. When you have that feeling when you show up and know you’re going to win, that’s what you want,” he said. “We lost a lot of games, so I think everybody is motivated to make sure that doesn’t happen again.
Roche’s Breakdown: Red Sox Outfield/DH
In one last look back on 2012, Pedroia would not place the blame on former manager Bobby Valentine for the team’s failures.
“He didn’t play, it’s the players,” said Pedroia. “Bobby didn’t go out there and get any hits or get any errors. We lost those games, it’s on us.”
Pedroia still had a solid season in 2012 thanks to a strong second half, hitting .290 with 163 hits in 141 games. He missed the final two games of the season after breaking his finger, but told reporters he’s healthy and ready to go for 2013.
So now the focus is a new start with a new-look team. The Red Sox went out and signed free agents Mike Napoli, Shane Victorino, Ryan Dempster and Jonny Gomes — all good clubhouse guys that can also perform on the field.
“I thought the moves were great,” said Pedroia. “We added a lot of personality to the team. They’re guys that are going to bring a lot of energy to the clubhouse – a lot of positive stuff.”
That also includes their new manager, John Farrell.
“John is awesome,” said Pedroia. “He’s easy to talk to, and when he walks into that room he has a presence that he brings. It’s going to be great for us.”
When it comes to fixing what was wrong last season, Pedroia said it’s pretty simple on paper.
“We have to do everything better than we did last year,” he said. “Everyone’s got to do what they do; try not to do too much.”
“Hopefully in the end we’re right where we need to be,” he said.
For everything Spring Training, follow WBZ-TV’s Dan Roche on Twitter @RochieWBZ. Tune in to his updates from Fort Myers, Florida all week on WBZ-TV, WBZ NewsRadio 1030 and 98.5 The Sports Hub!