November 18, 2008
Most sources list Boston's Dustin Pedroia as being 5-foot-9, and those who have seen him up close would call that "generous." A good, if unscientific rule of thumb (or foot) is to subtract about 2 inches from whatever it says on the back of a player's baseball card for his actual height.
That could make him 5-7, which would make the tales stand even taller for Pedroia, who was named this season's AL MVP.
Minnesota's Justin Morneau, who won the AL MVP in 2006, finished second this time in scattered voting that had five different players pick up at least one first-place vote. Kevin Youkilis, Pedroia's taller and balder teammate, finished third.
Red Sox Nation fawned over Pedroia like he was a puppy, albeit a ferocious one that would bite your ankles to win. So much sock — 54 doubles, 17 homers — coming in such a small package.
Sorry to disappoint everyone out there fighting for the Little Guy, but Pedroia ain't such a runt.
Pedroia is the first AL MVP to regularly play second base since Hall of Famer Nellie Fox (5-9, 150) in 1959. So, is Pedroia, listed at 180 pounds, the littlest MVP in either league since Fox? Scoff!
Jimmy Rollins (5-8, 160) won the NL MVP in 2007. And he slugged .531 to Pedroia's .493.
Pedroia, according to a body mass index calculator, actually is overweight for someone listed at 5-foot-9 (shrug). But when it comes to baseball's best mighty mites, Pedroia comes up a little short. Or maybe it's not short enough.
Here, thanks to Baseball-Reference.com and other sources is a list of the littlest MVPs of all time:
Li'l MVP (team): Height, Weight
Johnny Evers (1914 Braves): 5-9, 125
Bobby Shantz (1952 Athletics): 5-6, 142
Phil Rizzuto (1950 Yankees): 5-6, 160
George Burns (1926 Indians): 5-7, 160
Joe Morgan (1975, '76 Reds): 5-7, 160
Paul Waner (1927 Pirates): 5-8, 153
Fox ('59 White Sox): 5-9, 150
Rollins ('07 Phillies): 5-8, 160
Ichiro Suzuki (2001 Mariners): 5-9, 160
Zoilo Versalles (1965 Twins): 5-10, 150
Roger Peckinpaugh (1925 Senators): 5-10, 164
Maury Wills (1962 Dodgers): 5-11, 170
George Sisler (1922 Browns): 5-11, 170
Eddie Collins (1914 Athletics): 5-9, 175
Terry Pendleton (1991 Braves) 5-9, 180
Pedroia ('08 Red Sox) 5-9, 180
Joe Gordon (1942 Yankees) 5-10, 180
Yogi Berra (1951, '54, '55 Yankees) 5-8, 194