Future Hall of Fame pitcher Pedro Martinez is keeping quite busy as he decides whether or not to return to play in 2011 (don’t bet on it).
The 39-year-old, who compiled a 219-100 record with a 2.93 ERA in 18 seasons, is launching a new school on Monday in his native Dominican Republic.
It will be called the Pedro Martinez Youth Academy and Baseball Park, and it sounds pretty cool, according to a report from Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald.
With a charter school, health services, arts and music programs, plus recreational facilities including basketball and volleyball courts and a baseball park to be called “Little Fenway,’’ the project will be built on land acquired in and around the former site of the very modest house he grew up in the village of Manoguayabo in the hills outside Santo Domingo.
Martinez said his dream is to develop players to the point where they can play exhibition games against U.S. schools like Boston College or Boston University.
As far as his own playing days go, Martinez didn’t sound like a man eager to return. “I don’t know really,” he told Silverman. “I could probably play if I wanted to, I just haven’t decided yet.”
Sounds like he has a noble cause to focus his time on. I imagine the school will keep him plenty busy, and he can just relax and let the clock tick toward a Cooperstown enshrinement in 2015.
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Yankees first baseman Greg Bird gave his team tons of confidence to hand him the everyday job at first base to start the 2017 regular season, batting .451/.556/1.098 with eight home runs in 51 spring at-bats. But he’s followed that up by hitting .107/.254/.214 through the first month of the regular season.
GM Brian Cashman doesn’t have any intent to demote Bird back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports. Cashman said, “It’s not even an option for me in my mind right now, at all.”
Bird didn’t start Sunday’s game against the Orioles, a 7-4 loss in 11 innings. Lefty Wade Miley started for the Orioles, prompting manager Joe Girardi to put Chris Carter into the lineup at first base. If Bird isn’t able to figure things out, Carter might have an increased role on the team.
Rays starter Chris Archer threw his first pitch to Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista behind the slugger’s back with one out in the first inning of Sunday afternoon’s game in Toronto. Bautista and Archer then had a staredown. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf issued warnings to both teams. Bautista ultimately flied out to right field and he appeared to have a quick word with Archer on his way back to the dugout.
Archer could have been exacting revenge — euphemistically known as “protecting his teammate” — because Jays reliever Joe Biagini hit Rays outfielder Steven Souza in the seventh inning of Saturday’s game. Souza was forced to leave the game and underwent an X-ray, which came back negative. He was held out of Sunday’s lineup. Biagini’s pitch did not appear to be intentional.
The Jays won Sunday’s contest 3-1 with no further incident. The two clubs meet again in Tampa for a three-game series starting on May 5, so we’ll see if Sunday was the last of the bad blood between them.