Papi thrilled to watch Pedro enter Hall
BOSTON -- While Pedro Martinez delivered his Hall of Fame speech in Cooperstown on Sunday, David Ortiz was watching on TV in the Red Sox's clubhouse at Fenway Park, hanging on every word.
The speech was a doozy -- funny, engaging, emotional and full of pride -- and that came as no surprise to Ortiz, Martinez's former teammate and Dominican countryman.
"I know Pedro very well," Ortiz said. "What I saw was the guy that I know."
:: Hall of Fame 2015: Complete coverage ::With his induction into the Hall of Fame alongside Craig Biggio, Randy Johnson and John Smoltz, Martinez became just the second player from the Dominican Republic to have his name enshrined in Cooperstown. The first was pitcher Juan Marichel, whom Martinez asked to stand by his side as his speech concluded.
"I remember [Shane] Victorino asked me, 'Man, it's crazy that out of all the great players out of the Dominican, there's only two Hall of Famers,'" Ortiz said. "I told Victorino, 'Remember, it doesn't matter how good of a player you are, you need to achieve some good numbers to get into the Hall of Fame.'"
Martinez and Ortiz were teammates in 2003-04, leading the Red Sox to their first World Series title in 86 years. In seven seasons with Boston from 1998-2004, Martinez went 117-37 with a 2.52 ERA.
"Pedro was special," Ortiz said. "Unbelievable competitor, best stuff I've ever seen in a pitcher, and the most important thing, an incredible human being.
"I think a lot of people misjudged Pedro because of the way he went about his business, you know what I'm saying?" Ortiz continued. "Besides that, Pedro is a very Christian person, and a person that has much love for everyone. I don't think you could ever be around a better human being than what he is."
While Martinez's career numbers were tremendous, given the offensive era in which he played, Red Sox manager John Farrell said he was not sure whether the righty's win total -- 219 -- might be enough to send him to Cooperstown.
"So many times you think that the win total has got to be in the high 200s, and yet here's Pedro at 219. You thought that might be the one thing that holds him back," Farrell said. "But the fact he was so elite in an offensive era, he was every bit as dominant as anyone during any stage of the game's history."
Right-hander Clay Buchholz expressed awe at Martinez's confident pitching style, big personality and sheer dominance over his 18-year career.
"The time that he did put up the numbers, that was the era that it was all about hitting," Buchholz said. "Just seeing the ticker on the bottom of the screen about his career numbers, you can't even fathom going out there and doing that for as many years as he did it."
With his speech on Sunday, Martinez made it abundantly clear that baseball will never see another person like him. But could the game ever see another Pedro on the mound?
"I hope so," Farrell said. "I hope he's wearing a Red Sox uniform, too."