Red Sox

‘The fans are the best’: J.D. Martinez discussed his time with the Red Sox, thoughts on his future

"It's just been a strange year."

J.D. Martinez during a Red Sox-Royals game earlier in September 2022.
J.D. Martinez during a Red Sox-Royals game earlier in September 2022. AP Photo/Michael Dwyer

The Red Sox were officially eliminated on Sunday night in a rain-shortened 2-0 defeat to the Yankees.

With the possibility of the postseason formally ended, players’ attention has begun to shift to what their individual futures might hold.

J.D. Martinez, 35, is in the final year of his contract, and is not expected to re-sign with Boston.

“It’s just been a strange year,” Martinez told Peter Abraham of The Boston Globe on Sunday, summarizing both the team’s disappointing season as well as the public trade rumors that the designated hitter had to wade through in July. In the end, Martinez stayed put.

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Now, he’s contemplating what could be his final few games in a Red Sox jersey.

“The fans are the best,” Martinez said of his time in Boston. “There’s never a dull day. It’s been fun, a cool experience. I’ve loved it.”

Signed in Feb. 2018, Martinez provided an incredible impact in his first season. Ensconced in the middle of a powerful Red Sox batting order, Martinez hit .330 with 43 home runs, leading the league with 130 RBIs and 358 total bases. Boston finished the season as champions, defeating the Dodgers in five games to win the World Series.

But in 2022, Martinez has so far managed just 12 home runs. He’s hit just .210 in the second half of the season with a .612 OPS (more than 250 points lower than his career average).

As he thinks about his baseball future, Martinez has some clear paramenters, even if it means someplace other than Boston.

“I’d like to keep playing another two years, at least,” Martinez noted. “Hopefully I’ll be in a situation where I know I can be successful. A team that’s winning and will get the best out of me.”

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