When I first heard that the New York Mets had offered Pedro Martinez a big honkin' contract I was unhappy about the matter. I thought to myself -- he's old, he can't pitch late into games anymore, he says dumbass things publicly(See: 'New York is my Daddy'), he sometimes loses focus and his pitches end up being deposited 400 feet away, and then his next pitch is aimed squarely at the batters head, he also might have a problem with his shoulder(but that seems to be said every off season).
But time passed. And I read about him, and I thought about it, and now I think, why not Pedro in Flushing?
The man's career record is: 182 wins, 76 losses. That's as a starting pitcher since 1994. His carreer ERA is 2.71! And the last 7 seasons, he's been in the American League, which is the land of 4.00 and higher ERA's for top winning pitchers annually. Just last year, when I had been under the impression Pedro was having a bad season, he finished 16-9 with a 3.90 ERA. He also helped the Red Sox come back from a 3-0 deficit in the ALCS and then he helped them win a World Series. He broke the friggin' curse of the Bambino for God's sake! This is a pitcher who knows how to win big games, and who helps his team win any way he can. Even if that means throwing Don Zimmer to the ground by his head.
By comparison, last year the Mets winningest starter was Steve Traschel. He had a 12-13 record with a 4.00 ERA. Though the ERA's are comparible, Traschel pitched in the National League, a much more pitcher friendly league. Glavine and Leiter had decent years, but Leiter will be pitching in Miami or the Bronx next year and Glavine will fall apart in the second half like he did this past year. That leaves Benson and Zambrano to bring the Mets to glory and that just doesn't sit well with me. Benson is spotty at best, and Zambrano's arm might fall off.
Pedro Martinez will bring his snotty, immature attitude and yeah, he'll cause some problems here and there with the Media and probably some teammates. But he's going to win basbeball games. He's going to strike out 15 batters in a game at Shea Stadium. He's going to throw some beanballs, probably at Yankees and Braves players. The bottom line is, he'll bring an electricity and excitement to Flushing that hasn't been seen since the coked out Doc Gooden was throwing bb's past juice-free National League sluggers. He's also only 33 years old, which means by the time his contract expires, he'll only be 37. By comparison, Leiter and Glavine, the Mets top two pitchers, are at 39 and 38 respectively.
Maybe it's a lot of talk over nothing though. He could end up back in Boston. Or if the Yanks can't land Randy Johnson, Pedro will be striking out and throwing beanballs at Red Sox players. But if he lands at Shea, I forsee it being a good thing. Mets in '06!