Pedro Martinez Elected to Baseball Hall of Fame
For Pedro Martinez, his induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame is a moment in history that he wants to share with everyone—especially people in Boston.
The former Red Sox pitcher celebrated the announcement made by the Hall of Fame and the Baseball Writers’ Association of America by tipping his proverbial cap to his former teammates and fans on Tuesday from Fenway Park.
“It’s humbling and a great honor,” he said.
Martinez, who spoke to reporters in both Spanish and English during a press conference in Boston, said the criticism he faced early on made him a stronger player throughout his career.
“[It] made me focus even better,” he said. “For some reason, I was a loose goose when I wasn’t pitching. But when it came to the field, everything would change…all those thoughts about me failing, or not being able to do it, triggered something. I don’t know what.”
He said he appreciated every game like “there was no tomorrow,” and said the honor of being chosen to be part of baseball history is something that was as much his as it was Boston’s.
“Boston is as much of the Hall of Fame to me, as I am to them. This goes to them, too. Every moment I can share with Boston is special,” he said.
When asked about the highest and lowest points in his career, both times Martinez mentioned his ties to the Red Sox.
“Every game I pitched here,” he said, before adding that leaving Boston was at the lower end of the spectrum.
“I have a love for everything in Boston,” he said.
Martinez, who played for the Red Sox in 2004 when the team won their first World Series in 86 years, was voted in with Randy Johnson and John Smoltz, making the players the first trio of pitchers honored by the BBWAA in the same election, according to the Hall of Fame’s website.
“I can’t wait to be near the other three guys that are going in with me. I am absolutely honored to become part of history and the Hall of Fame in this special way,” he said.
According to EPSN, candidates need 412 votes—or 75 percent of the 549 ballots cast—to secure a spot in the Hall of Fame.
Talking about the importance of his Dominican roots, Martinez, a three-time Cy Young winner, told reporters that he wished he could see the reaction back home when it was announced he would be welcomed into the Hall of Fame alongside other baseball greats.
He said that when he pitched during a Red Sox game it was “curfew day” in the Dominican Republic, and people would crowd together to watch him play.
He said the news about his induction would probably have caused riots in the streets.
“I’m going to suck this moment in, and enjoy it with everyone,” he said.