While reports last month indicated that he was interested to returning to the majors, perhaps with the Red Sox, Pedro Martinez said Sunday that he is leaning towards retirement.
“I keep active because I have not announced my retirement, because that is something that takes time and you have to plan it. Plus, it is something that the Dominican people expected,” Martinez said in an interview in his native Dominican Republic.
Martinez added that his comments last month about potentially pitching for the Red Sox this year were taken out of context.
“I did not mean I’m going to Boston,” he said.
Martinez, a three-time Cy Young Award winner, last pitched with the Phillies in 2009. The future Hall of Famer is 219-100 with a 2.93 ERA in 18-big league seasons.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.