By Matt McCarthy, 985TheSportsHub.com
Dustin Pedroia will attempt to take the next step in the lengthy rehab process from his 2017 knee surgery next week, and the Red Sox will be monitoring his status closely to try and gauge the health of their starting second baseman.
According to Jason Mastrodonato of The Boston Herald, Pedroia is set to try running next week for the first time in months.
Next week a big one for the Red Sox - I'm told Dustin Pedroia will start running for the first time this offseason to test his knee.
Sox have considered this a key step in his progress that could soon determine if they'll need to add other 2B options going into camp.
— Jason Mastrodonato (@JMastrodonato) January 10, 2019
Pedroia appeared in just three games for the Red Sox in 2018 after undergoing a cartilage restoration procedure after the 2017 playoffs. Knuckleballer Steven Wright had a similar surgery on his knee and has also struggled to stay on the field.
The uncertainty surrounding the second baseman's status puts the Red Sox in an unenviable position. The team has made a significant commitment to Pedroia, who is still owed a total of $40 million for the next three seasons,
With payroll and luxury tax concerns, it's hard to see the Red Sox making any major outside investment in an insurance policy at second base, meaning the team will likely enter 2019 with Brock Holt and Eduardo Nunez as the backup plans if Pedroia cannot play.
President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski has also said that corner infielder Michael Chavis, one of the team's top hitting prospects, could see some time at second base in 2019.
Chavis is expected to start the year at Triple-A Pawtucket. He missed much of the 2018 season after testing positive for a performance enhancing substance.