- Gordon Edes, ESPN Staff Writer
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BOSTON -- Since going 3-for-39 (.077) in the first 10 games after the All-Star break, a slump that cost his batting average 22 percentage points overall, Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia has regained his stride at the plate, posting a slash line of .321/.381/.462/.844 over his last 25 games, scoring 16 runs and driving in 13. He enters the Baltimore series with a .299 batting average and .374 on-base percentage, which virtually mirror his career averages (.302, .370).
Meanwhile, there has been a dropoff is his slugging percentage. Pedroia is at .415, the lowest of his career and 40 percentage points lower than his career SGP of .455. With five games left to play in August, the Red Sox second baseman has yet to hit a home run in 23 games this month after hitting a home run in each of the last two games of July. He also went without a home run in 26 games in April, after tearing the UCL ligament in his left thumb in the first game of the season, and is on a pace to finish the season with 10 home runs, which would be his fewest since 2007, his rookie season.
What does it mean? Pedroia says he’s not a home-run hitter. John Farrell has said that teams are pitching Pedroia differently, working him away, and Pedroia has had to adjust accordingly. The guess here is that Pedroia has had to make adjustments because of the thumb, even though neither he nor anyone else will admit as much. It still defies belief that he has not missed any time with the injury.