There is enough history between Pedro Martinez and the New York Yankees to fill a compelling book.
This morning, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel confirmed that another chapter soon will be written, announcing during an appearance on WPHT radio in Philadelphia that Martinez will get the ball for Game 2 of the World Series at Yankee Stadium.
He also confirmed that Cole Hamels will start in Game 3 when the series heads to Philadelphia.
In his career, Martinez is 11-11 with a 3.20 ERA against the Yankees in the regular season, and 1-2 with a 4.72 ERA in six postseason appearances against the Yankees. All six of his postseason starts came during his seven seasons (1998-2004) with the Red Sox.
Of course, statistics don’t tell the whole story. Some of Martinez’s most memorable highlights during his transcendent run with the Red Sox came against the Yankees, including a 17-strikeout one-hitter in September 1999 and the Red Sox’ lone victory against New York in the American League Championship Series later that same season.
But later during his time with the Red Sox, the Yankees became a true nemesis, and the matchups were often contentious, particularly during the 2003 ALCS, which the Yankees won in seven games.
Overall, in 16 career starts during the regular season, Martinez is 8-4 with a 2.95 ERA on the Yankees’ home field.
Yesterday, Manuel hinted that he was leaning toward Martinez in Game 2.
“When we signed Pedro, I wondered what kind of shape he was in and what condition his arm was in,” Manuel said, according to MLB.com. “I think he passed both of those tests. I was watching those [postseason] games the other day on MLB [Network]. His velocity was sitting around 87 to 91, 92 mph. At times [this year] he’s throwing better than that. His command is still good. He has a tremendous feel for pitching and he loves to pitch. He likes the stage.
“Pedro has been in the big environment. He’s pitched about everywhere you can pitch. I don’t think nothing is going to really bother him or get him upset. I think we can pitch him in either ballpark, really. I don’t think it matters at all.”