Pedro Martinez didn’t even have to throw a pitch Wednesday to get a royal welcome. The three-time Cy Young Award-winner and eight-time All-Star received a racuous ovation on his way to the mound, overshadowing his many illustrious teammates and opponents.
Martinez, who’s using the World Baseball Classic as a showcase to prove that he’s still healthy, bathed in the applause as if it was just another outing. Perhaps the ovation meant something else entirely, though: Martinez, who went 5-6 with a 5.61 ERA last season, is nearing the end of his career and may not earn another big-league job again.
In that case, every time you see him might be your last. Martinez, who ranks seventh alltime in winning percentage, may get a start on his Hall candidacy sooner rather than later.