April 8, 2003

With owner John Henry stating that the Red Sox wanted Pedro Martinez to realize their commitment to him and their desire that he finish his career in Boston, they exercised their $17.5 million option on him for the 2004 season.

Martinez lived up to his end of the bargain, nearly leading the Red Sox into one World Series (The Great Grady Little Gaffe messed that up) and playing a lead role in the club reversing The Curse in 2004.

Unfortunately, in negotiating a contract extension in the winter of 2004-05, Martinez wanted a longer-term deal than seemed prudent. At age 33, with his slight build, guaranteeing him a truckload of money over multiple seasons was clearly a gamble.

The Mets signed him to a four-year, $52 million contract. In 2005, Martinez was his usual dominant self, going 15-8 with a 2.82 ERA.

That’s when awful luck, and age, caught up with him. For his full Mets run he went 32-23 with a 3,88 ERA. Not bad, but well short of his Red Sox’ heyday.

In seven Boston seasons Martinez was 117-37 with a 2.52 ERA, striking out 1,683 and walking 309.

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