Phils to Look at Pedro Martinez
The Phillies are going to watch Pedro Martinez throw today or tomorrow in the Dominican Republic after Ruben Amaro Jr. said earlier this season they had no interest in him, a team source confirmed. Why? Hey, why not? The Phillies are covering their bases in case Martinez has enough life left in his arm to help the Phillies this season.
This visit does not mean the Phillies are going to sign Martinez. It just means they are going to watch him throw. Martinez threw for a few teams last month. ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reported that “at least several teams walked away from Pedro Martinez’s throwing session unimpressed and uninterested in signing him.” The Los Angeles Times reported in June the Angels lost interest in Martinez after they watched him throw and his fastball most often clocked in the 85 mph range.
But ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark wrote Friday that an executive disputed reports that Martinez was utterly unimpressive. “We didn’t know what we were going to get,” the executive told Stark. “But it was a decent workout. We weren’t expecting to see the 1997 Pedro. But for a workout, we thought he was in pretty good shape, and he threw the ball reasonably well.”
Reports in April had Martinez seeking a $5 million contract, which is much more than the Phillies were willing to pay a few months ago. If he signed a prorated contract that would be about $2.5 million, plus incentives, which still seems steep for somebody who went 5-6 with a 5.61 ERA last season with the Mets.
Update (11:45 a.m.): Amaro on Martinez: “We are trying to explore all possible options as we try to improve our club.”