Dustin Pedroia has agreed to a seven-year, $100-million contract with the Boston Red Sox, keeping the 29-year-old in Boston through 2021.
WEEI, which first reported the agreement, said [the contract] is worth $100 million and begins after Pedroia’s current deal expires following the 2014 season.
Pedroia has been emerging as the face of the Red Sox franchise since his first full season in 2007, when he was named rookie of the year. The following season, he led the league in hits, runs scored and doubles as he made the All-Star Game in the first of four occasions, won the American League MVP, and earned Gold Glove and Silver Slugger honors.
Now in his eighth year with Boston, Pedroia, 29, has shown little sign of slowing down. He’s batting .308 and, after battling injuries in recent seasons, has played in all but one of the Red Sox’s games. Pedroia signed a six-year, $40.5 million extension in December 2008 that will pay him $10 million in 2014. The new contract eliminates a 2015 club option of $11 million from his previous deal.
He’ll be 38 when his extension expires.
Pedroia was drafted in 2004 by the Red Sox and made his major league debut in 2006. A four-time all-star, Pedroia helped Boston win the 2007 World Series.
A second-round pick of the Red Sox in the 2004 amateur draft, Pedroia made his major league debut in August 2006. He hit .191 in 31 games that season then had his breakout season in 2007 when Boston won its second World Series championship in four years. He hit .317 with eight homers and 50 RBI.
He did even better in 2008 with a .326 batting average, 17 homers and 83 RBI, winning a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger award.
In 2011, Pedroia posted career highs of 21 homers and 91 RBI with a .307 batting average. He dipped slightly last year with a .290 average, 15 homers and 65 RBI as the Red Sox finished in last place in the AL East with a 69-93 record under manager Bobby Valentine.
Boston has become home for Pedroia, who was born in Woodland, Calif. and played college baseball at Arizona State University.
Pedroia wants to be in the same uniform as — and perhaps someday be enshrined in Cooperstown with — Bobby Doerr and go down as one of the greatest Red Sox second basemen ever. Doerr spent all of his 14 seasons with the Sox. He was 33 when he retired following the 1951 season.
“It’s really important,” said Pedroia of remaining in Boston. “The Red Sox drafted me and a lot of teams passed on me because of my size and stuff like that. It’s pretty important. That’s why I want to work as hard as I can to make sure that they made the right choice in drafting me and me being here my whole career.
“I’m a pretty loyal guy. I love being here. I live and die by this team. It’s important to me to be here my whole time. I want to be in a place that’s special to me and this place has been that.”