Red Sox: Why J.D. Martinez might actually not be the “answer” to fans’ prayers

PHOENIX, AZ - OCTOBER 04: J.D. Martinez
PHOENIX, AZ - OCTOBER 04: J.D. Martinez /
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LOS ANGELES, CA – OCTOBER 06: J.D. Martinez (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA – OCTOBER 06: J.D. Martinez (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

J.D. Martinez’s numbers in Arizona

The month of September was one for him to remember for a long time. He tallied 40 hits in 99 at-bats and slashed .404/16/36/1 in 24 games. Martinez reached base in all but two games that month. That was precisely the type of closing out any player wants to have in a contract year. Boras was counting on that performance to make his client one of the most sought after during the offseason.

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What brought this barrage that we hadn’t seen before? Martinez clubbed a four-homer game and tied the record for the most home runs in consecutive games played at five home runs. One thing that Martinez loves is right-handed pitching. He destroys them. While a much higher average against lefties, it’s clear that when he wants to mash, he prefers them through from the right side.  If he could have it his way, he’d play at home, at night, and on grass against righties.

Players are going to start realizing that they won’t be getting big contracts because of one month. Yes, Martinez crushed it but under what circumstances? Martinez moved from the American League Central Tigers in a cold climate to the Diamondbacks in the National League West which has a much warmer climate. It’s Arizona. Hello?! Amped numbers are to be expected.

Let’s also not forget that the dimensions of the two parks are slightly different as Comerica Park is larger than Chase Field. Comerica’s left field is 345 feet compared to Chase Fields’ 330 feet. Deep center is also farther away in Detroit at 420 feet compared to 407 at Chase Field.  Right field has a four-foot variance between the two. Comerica is 330 feet in right, Chase is 334 feet.

The fact of the matter is, Martinez likes hitting balls in warmer climates. Short porches at Yankee Stadium and the Monster in Left at Fenway should help the numbers as well. Boston might not be the best place for him but only time will tell. The baseball world saw a major turn around in a player who does not scream home run machine. When you compare them to the Yankees sluggers, he’s five inches shorter and weighs 60 fewer pounds. I don’t think anyone can see him slugging 60+ home runs as a member of the Red Sox. It just is not going to happen.