Right-hander Nick Martinez has agreed to a contract with the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters in Japan, according to Jon Heyman of FanRag (Twitter link). The deal is worth $2.2MM, MLBTR has learned. Martinez revealed that he turned down multiple major league offers before heading to Japan, per Sponichi (h/t: Kazuto Yamazaki of Beyond the Box Score, on Twitter).
The 27-year-old Martinez had been on the market since the Rangers non-tendered him Dec. 1. Martinez otherwise would have been in line to collect a projected $2MM in arbitration. As it stands, Texas has been the only major league organization for Martinez, whom the team chose in the 18th round of the 2011 draft.
Martinez ended up exceeding the 100-inning mark in 2014, ’15 and ’17 with the Rangers, though a lack of strikeouts and groundballs helped lead to run prevention issues in the majors. In all, he worked to a 4.77 ERA/5.36 FIP with 5.14 K/9, 3.21 BB/9 and a 39.8 percent grounder rate over 415 1/3 innings before immigrating to Asia. Martinez was worth minus-0.2 fWAR during his Texas tenure, which he wrapped up with a replacement-level 2017 that consisted of 111 1/3 frames of 5.66 ERA/5.80 FIP ball.
Japan’s Hot Stove has been hotter than the MLB’s it seems
Everyone is going to Japan.
I think it’s mostly because they see some players go over there and dominate, then return to the states on a bigger contract then he would’ve gotten now. Smart move on his part of it works out
How does the Dollar stack up against the Yen these days in exchange rates ?
Unbelievable that they would pay a guy 1.8 million with an ERA over 5.60 the last two years
You do realize there’s a big difference in competition between the majors and Japan, right? Anyone who’s even approached success in the upper minors or majors has been targeted by teams in Asia because their numbers could be a lot better there.
I can’t believe he received multiple major league offers. Thought he would have had to settle for a minor league deal if he signed in the MLB.
Interesting development in light of the announcement of a partnership between the Rangers and Ham Fighters.
They’re called the Fighters, not Ham Fighters. They’re sponsored by Nippon Ham
You just blew my mind. All these years I was too afraid to ask what a ham fighter was.
He was an unrestricted FA. No business relationtion with TEX.
Enjoy the food nick!
Mmmmmm I like ham lol. Sounds like a ninja cartoon ham fighters lol.
I really thought Martinez would land in BAL and occupy one of their 3 rotation vacancies. O’s options for SPs on the free agent market are dwindling quickly, and they have yet to sign even one. This leads me to think Angelos remains confident they’ll land 2 SPs in a Machado trade.
The last I read was that the O’s was talking to Cash and his agents. Sounds like they maybe interested in signing Cash. I sure hope the Rangers can re-sign Cash quick.