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Career Numbers as a Met
Innings Pitched: 486.2
Games Started: 79
Complete Games: Four
Best Individual Season: 2005 (15-8, 2.82 ERA, 217 innings pitched, four complete games, one shutout, 208 strikeouts)
Yet another former Cy Young winner the Mets were thankful to have was Pedro Martinez.
Martinez first came up with the Dodgers and played with his older brother, Ramon Martinez. Pedro had what it took to be a great starting pitcher, but Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda thought it would be better to have him in the bullpen due to his small stature. Martinez first came up with the Dodgers as a September call-up in 1992 and pitched in Los Angeles in 1993 before getting traded to the Expos for Delino DeShields.
Once he went to Montreal, Martinez developed into one of the best pitchers in baseball. He won his first and only NL Cy Young Award in 1997 with a 17-8 record, a 1.90 ERA, 305 strikeouts and 13 complete games. However, after this memorable season, Martinez was approaching free agency, and the low-budgeted Expos traded him prior to the 1998 season to the Red Sox for Carl Pavano and Tony Armas, Jr.
After arriving in Boston, Martinez signed a new six-year contract with the Red Sox. He went 19-7 in 1998 and finished second in the AL Cy Young Award voting to Roger Clemens.
A year later, Martinez had one of the best pitching seasons ever. He won the pitching Triple Crown in 1999 by going 23-4 with a 2.07 ERA and 313 strikeouts. As a result, he was unanimously selected for his first AL Cy Young Award and second overall. He even finished a close second place in the AL MVP voting to Ivan Rodriguez.
In 2000, Martinez was even better. He won his third Cy Young Award in a four-year span by going 18-6 with a remarkable 1.74 ERA. He then stayed in Boston through 2004 and helped the Red Sox break their 86-year World Series drought in his final year in Boston.
After winning his first and only World Series, Martinez signed a four-year $53 million contract to become the Mets' new ace. His signing turned out to be pivotal, as it helped the Mets land Carlos Beltran as well during the same offseason.
In 2005, Martinez went 15-8 with a 2.82 ERA. He made his first All-Star team as a Met that year, and seventh overall. He also had 208 strikeouts and led the league with a 0.95 WHIP.
Martinez had another promising start in 2006, but in May, during a game in Florida, Martinez was told by an umpire to change his undershirt. While heading into the clubhouse to do so, Martinez slipped and hurt his hip, although this injury did not really affect him significantly until later. Martinez had started the year with a 5-1 record, but only went 4-7 during the last four months of the season.
He also missed a month due to that same hip injury, as well as another two months later in the season due to a calf injury, which sidelined him throughout the postseason. Martinez finished the 2006 season with a 9-8 record and a 4.48 ERA.
At the end of the 2006 season, it was also discovered that Martinez had a torn rotator cuff. As a result, he was forced to miss the vast majority of the 2007 season. While rehabbing, Martinez considered retirement if the rehabbing did not go thoroughly well. However, he returned to the mound in early September of 2007 and went 3-1 in five starts with a 2.57 ERA only to see his Mets team ultimately collapse and narrowly miss the postseason in heartbreaking fashion.
When the Mets traded for Johan Santana before the 2008 season, the Mets were projected to be one of the best teams in the National League with Santana and Martinez leading the rotation. However, 2008 was a year to forget for Martinez. He got injured just four innings into his first start of the season and missed the next two months with a strained left hamstring.
When he returned, his fastball lost velocity, and Martinez simply wasn't the same pitcher as before. He ended up suffering his first losing record ever at 5-6, and he finished with a career-worst 5.61 ERA.
After the 2008 season, Martinez remained un-signed through most of 2009. However, the Phillies of all teams decided to sign Pedro to a one-year $1 million contract in July. He made a few starts for the Phillies that year, including one against his former Mets team that he ultimately won.
There was a lot of hype in the 2009 World Series, as Martinez and his Phillies faced the Yankees. However, Martinez struggled in the World Series and the Yankees ultimately won it all.
Pedro Martinez may not have done as much as the Mets and their fans had hoped he would do, but Martinez certainly became a symbol of the improvement the Mets made between their poor seasons between 2002-2004 and their better seasons between 2005-2008.