FORT MYERS, Fla. ó The great Pedro Martinez arrived at Red Sox camp today. He is starting his second season as a special assistant to general manager Ben Cherington.
Martinez was involved mainly in player development last year, working with players in the minors and occasionally spending time with the major league team. He said he hopes to add to that this season while cutting down on the public appearances the team asks him to do.
Like Jason Varitek, Martinez seems genuine in having a role in the organization. He offered these thoughts on other topics:
Being on the 2015 Hall of Fame ballot: "I'm looking forward to that. Thereís only so much I can do. As of now, Iím just like you, hoping and waiting. I think I should have a shot but it's not up to me. I can only hope and wait."
(Martinez had a career ERA+ of 154 and an 86.0 WAR. He should get every vote.)
On former teammate Curt Schilling fighting cancer: "I sent a tweet to try to tell him that I'll be praying for him and we're going to keep him in our thoughts and prayers. I don't have his phone number. ... I hope that he competes the same way he did in big games."
On his work for TBS during the postseason: "It's a lot more work than I thought, but itís really interesting and I had a great time."
Martinez said the current group of Red Sox pitching prospects is the best he has seen. He has particular praise for Drake Britton, Anthony Ranaudo and Henry Owens.
"A natural," he said of Owens.