Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Monday, February 18, 2013

Russell Martin expects to play shortstop for Canada in World Baseball Classic

Yes, and I expect to play bermudavarius for Guadalupe Plata in some rancid tent at SXSW.

“It’s hilarious, the reactions I get,” Martin told Morosi at the Pirates’ spring training complex on Monday. “It’s like, ‘this guy’s a catcher. He wants to play shortstop.’”

The three-time All-Star has logged 925 games in his seven-year major league career, but none have come as a shortstop. Martin does have experience playing the infield, though. He spent a season in the minors as an everyday third baseman and played 11 games at third base for the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2008.

Canada, who has players such as Justin Morneau and Brett Lawrie on its roster, does not have a shortstop with major league experience. Martin said it was his choice to volunteer to play the position.

“I like to prove people wrong,” Martin said. “I’m going to do what I feel like doing. I feel like playing shortstop.”

Martin has already received a shortstop’s glove and has been taking ground balls at his new position.

Repoz Posted: February 18, 2013 at 10:16 PM | 26 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: pirates

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Austin Posted: February 18, 2013 at 10:59 PM (#4371642)
Pasta-diving Martin...
   2. Gamingboy Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:02 PM (#4371644)
Pasta-diving Martin...


What'll really be funny is if he's a better defensive SS than Jeter.
   3. Rennie's Tenet Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:10 PM (#4371646)
As Pirate fans visualize Martin leaving the field on a stretcher....
   4. catomi01 Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:19 PM (#4371650)
wouldn't lawrie at short and martin at third (where he actually has some experience as the excerpt says) make more sense?
   5. Gamingboy Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:38 PM (#4371652)

wouldn't lawrie at short and martin at third (where he actually has some experience as the excerpt says) make more sense?


Brett Lawrie is getting paid more and is the hope and dreams of Toronto. Martin plays in Pittsburgh.
   6. Sleepy's still holding up that little wild bouquet Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:57 PM (#4371655)
This makes me happy. I don't know why, and I don't care. It's fun.
   7. Dan Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:44 AM (#4371687)
If Martin shows that he's capable at SS, do the Pirates consider moving him there? He's probably better than their other options at the position if he can handle it defensively!
   8. Der-K: downgraded to lurker Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:19 AM (#4371737)
I'm probably mistaken but: didn't Martin hint that they should have him play short or he might skip the tourney?
   9. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:25 AM (#4371740)
If Martin shows that he's capable at SS, do the Pirates consider moving him there?
They could have the first ever middle infield made up entirely of guys who are actually catchers.
   10. Mike Emeigh Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:27 AM (#4371743)
As Pirate fans visualize Martin leaving the field on a stretcher....


It would serve Neil Huntington right. The Martin contract ranks as one of the biggest wastes of money of the offseason.

-- MWE
   11. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:32 AM (#4371744)
So who is playing catcher for Canada? Kottaras? Nickeas?
   12. Der-K: downgraded to lurker Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:36 AM (#4371745)
Chris Robinson?
   13. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:45 AM (#4371749)
Chris Robinson?
I hope the pitching staff isn't Hard To Handle.
   14. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:55 AM (#4371761)
It would serve Neil Huntington right. The Martin contract ranks as one of the biggest wastes of money of the offseason.

Wow, that's a huge overbid. Martin is an average to above average (depending on your view of his receiving skills) C getting paid average money.

It's a perfectly cromulent contract.
   15. Der-K: downgraded to lurker Posted: February 19, 2013 at 10:10 AM (#4371774)
Mike thinks Martin's lost it at the plate. (I disagree, but there are signs.)
   16. JimMusComp misses Jerry Dipoto... Posted: February 19, 2013 at 10:31 AM (#4371791)
Well played, #13.
   17. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:26 AM (#4371843)
#14--I think part of the issue with the contract was that the Pirates already had a cromulent catcher on their team who was making the minimum (Mike McKenry). The Pirates had a limited amount of money to spend this offseason, and chose to make the extremely marginal upgrade from McKenry to Martin, rather than on the extremely obvious weaknesses they had all year (shortstop, first base, and left field).

So even though Martin's very likely to be worth his contract, that doesn't mean it was a good deal for the Pirates.
   18. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:34 AM (#4371849)
I'm probably mistaken but: didn't Martin hint that they should have him play short or he might skip the tourney?

"If I ain't startin', I ain't departin': Operation Shutdown II."
   19. flournoy Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:13 PM (#4371876)
Wait, so who launched Operation Shutdown I? Garry Templeton or Derek Bell?
   20. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:19 PM (#4371884)
#14--I think part of the issue with the contract was that the Pirates already had a cromulent catcher on their team who was making the minimum (Mike McKenry).

Shouldn't there be plenty of PT for both?
   21. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:44 PM (#4371908)
Shouldn't there be plenty of PT for both?


Of course--McKenry slots in as a backup catcher, and he should be one of the better ones in the league.

Martin and McKenry both project to around a 90 OPS+ this year (I assume). Their opening day lineup is going to have Clint Barmes and Travis Snider in it. There are a lot of Pirates fans who feel that the ~$20MM they spent on Martin would have been a lot better spent on guys like Stephen Drew, Melky Cabrera, Jonny Gomes, etc--positions where the exact same amount of money could have produced a HUGE upgrade in expected performance.

Then, heck drop a million bucks on George Kottaras, and now you have a backup catcher who gets on base and hits left-handed, rather than their current situation, where they have two right-handed guys with the exact same skillset (low OBP, high SLG).
   22. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:56 PM (#4371920)
Martin and McKenry both project to around a 90 OPS+ this year (I assume). Their opening day lineup is going to have Clint Barmes and Travis Snider in it. There are a lot of Pirates fans who feel that the ~$20MM they spent on Martin would have been a lot better spent on guys like Stephen Drew, Melky Cabrera, Jonny Gomes, etc--positions where the exact same amount of money could have produced a HUGE upgrade in expected performance.

Then, heck drop a million bucks on George Kottaras, and now you have a backup catcher who gets on base and hits left-handed, rather than their current situation, where they have two right-handed guys with the exact same skillset (low OBP, high SLG).


Is there any evidence the Pirates were payroll constrained by the Martin deal? Maybe they signed who they could.

Boston and Toronto are much friendlier hitting environments, and higher profile teams, to rebuild value for guys like you mentioned.
   23. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: February 19, 2013 at 07:52 PM (#4372266)
Chris Robinson?
I hope the pitching staff isn't Hard To Handle.

Is this an Otis Redding reference? I don't get it.
   24. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: February 19, 2013 at 08:41 PM (#4372286)
Chris Robinson's Black Crowes had a popular cover of the Otis Redding song.
   25. KJOK Posted: February 20, 2013 at 12:48 AM (#4372379)
Wait, so who launched Operation Shutdown I? Garry Templeton or Derek Bell?

That was Derek Bell.
Templeton was the "If I ain't startin' I ain't departin'" comment about the All-star game.

   26. SavoyBG Posted: February 20, 2013 at 01:48 AM (#4372391)
Russell will probably have more range than Jeter.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Brian
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOTP: 28 November 2016: Bud Selig reminisces about 1999 MLB trip to Cuba, meeting Fidel Castro
(1682 - 1:07am, Dec 04)
Last: Orange Julius Does the alt-Hulk Smash

NewsblogOT - November* 2016 College Football thread
(554 - 12:54am, Dec 04)
Last: AuntBea

NewsblogCarlos Beltran agrees to one-year, $16M deal with Astros
(14 - 12:38am, Dec 04)
Last: Michael J. Binkley's anxiety closet

NewsblogBraves Acquire Jaime Garcia
(24 - 11:41pm, Dec 03)
Last: flournoy

NewsblogCubs sign outfielder Jay to 1-year contract
(9 - 11:34pm, Dec 03)
Last: PreservedFish

NewsblogVenezuelan players rally behind Omar Vizquel, threaten WBC boycott
(45 - 11:29pm, Dec 03)
Last: SoSHially Unacceptable

Hall of Merit2017 Hall of Merit Ballot Discussion
(160 - 11:03pm, Dec 03)
Last: Bleed the Freak

NewsblogOT: NBA 2016-17 Preseason Thread
(1136 - 10:49pm, Dec 03)
Last: jmurph

Newsblog2016 Non-Tender Tracker
(5 - 9:15pm, Dec 03)
Last: puck

NewsblogHall of Fame: Bud Selig lock for election on Today's Game ballot | SI.com
(18 - 6:54pm, Dec 03)
Last: David Nieporent (now, with children)

NewsblogLifetime Achievement Award: Peter Gammons | BaseballAmerica.com
(135 - 6:32pm, Dec 03)
Last: Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play

NewsblogD-Backs nontender Wellington Castillo, sign Jeff Mathis
(6 - 6:14pm, Dec 03)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogFree-agent catcher Jeff Mathis signs with Diamondbacks
(2 - 6:10pm, Dec 03)
Last: Matt Welch

NewsblogColumn: Nationals Must Go For It All To Win With Harper
(1 - 2:57pm, Dec 03)
Last: Jose Remains The Most Absurd Thing on the Site

NewsblogRays pretty much strike out in MLB's new labor deal
(1 - 2:36pm, Dec 03)
Last: Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer

Page rendered in 0.1884 seconds
47 querie(s) executed