- Name: Edgar Martinez
- Nicknames: "Gar," "Papi"
- Acquired: Signed as minor league free agent in 1982
- Years as Mariner: 18
- Famous For: "The Double," namesake of the DH of the Year award
- Awards: seven-time All-Star, five-time Silver Slugger, 1992 and 1995 batting title
In the opening slide, I mentioned that every team has players that define their franchise. If I had children and wanted to show them what a Mariner should be, I'd point to Edgar.
From the "Eeeeeeeeeedgaaaaaaar" chants, the stories about his eye-training skills and, of course, "The Double," no other player in Mariners history was so steady and dependable.
Chances are good that Ken Griffey, Jr. will be the first to enter the Hall of Fame with an "S" on his bronzed hat. Edgar's support on this year's ballot slightly slipped due to the amount of new strong candidates. While many expect he'll make it some day, the road to get there won't be easy.
So, how could a player who might never get into the Hall of Fame be ranked above a few sure-fire first ballot guys?
He never quit on us.
The argument will always be made about Edgar not playing defense. When he stepped into the batters box, though, he was among the most feared right-handed hitters in the game. He didn't always do it with the long ball, but Edgar had elite on-base skills and drove the gap well.
In 1995, Edgar posted a 7.5 WAR. Only John Valentin, Barry Bonds and Albert Belle posted a better number. From 1995 to 2001, which was Edgar's best stretch, only Bonds, Jeff Bagwell, Alex Rodriguez, Mike Piazza, Sammy Sosa and Griffey posted better cumulative WARs.
You don't have streets and awards named after you unless you've done a few things right. Edgar just happened to do everything right for the Mariners.
A true role model and icon of Seattle, Edgar Martinez is the greatest Mariner of all-time.