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.