I haven’t managed to add any 2013 baseball cards to my collection yet, though just about every baseball card blogger has been busy showing off their finds over the past couple of days. (Yes, I’m just a little bit jealous :-) )

Fortunately, Zach of Autographed Cards sent me a few cards this week. Let’s take a look at one of them.

Signed Edgar Martinez 2006 Bowman baseball card

Signed Edgar Martinez 2006 Bowman baseball card

Edgar Martinez was one of approximately seven dozen players to suit up for the Newark Bears in 2009, their final year in the Atlantic League. Between the constant roster churn and the difficulty of finding cards that might belong to this Edgar Martinez among all of those featuring the more famous Seattle Mariners designated hitter, I never tracked down a baseball card to get signed that year.

Since leaving the Bears, Martinez pitched for the Rio Grande Valley WhiteWings in the North American League, the Wichita Wingnuts in the American Association and the Petroleros de Minatitlan in the Mexican League. I assume Zach got the card signed last year when Martinez was playing for Wichita.

Once upon a time, Martinez was viewed as a prospect: he pitched in the 2006 All-Star Futures Game for the World Team and was protected on the Boston Red Sox 40-man roster from 2005-07. In 2005, he averaged better than a strikeout per inning as a reliever for the Single-A  Wilmington Blue Rocks and Double-A Portland Sea Dogs. But at the higher levels of the minor leagues, Martinez was less able to dominate hitters.

In 2009, Martinez found himself entering the world of independent baseball with the Newark Bears. He made 12 starts, tied for fifth most on a team that had 27 different pitchers start at least one game. He finished with a 1-3 record, a 6.09 ERA and had more walks (30) than strikeouts (20) for the first time in his career in his only season as a full-time starter. He also appeared in two games at second base and one at shortstop, and had two hits in seven at-bats.

Edgar Martinez

Edgar Martinez pitches for the Newark Bears in 2009 (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

Do you have any memories of Edgar Martinez or the 2009 Newark Bears’ strange season?

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About Paul Hadsall

I'm the former editor of a weekly community newspaper in New Jersey. I've been a New York Mets fan for most of my life and I've been blogging about them, minor league baseball, baseball cards and autograph collecting since 2007. Contact me at paul@randombaseballstuff.com

4 responses

  1. lonestarr says:

    Wow, did you ever do any writeups on that 2009 season? Sounds like an interesting one.

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    • Paul says:

      I think I blogged most of the games I went to that year, and I even went on a few road trips.

      I don’t think I really appreciated how weird the season was at the time, though – I was more preoccupied with trying to figure out who was on the team and being frustrated by pitchers who couldn’t throw strikes.

      (In retrospect, that last complaint probably points to inadequacies among the Atlantic League umpires as well as the Newark pitchers in 2009.)

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  2. zman40 says:

    It was pretty funny when I got that card signed. One of the other players came over to see the card and Edgar was telling him that that was when he looked like Pedro (I’m assuming Martinez). I just thought to myself “you do not look like Pedro, you look like Bartolo Colon”.

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    • Paul says:

      Unless he’s just talking about his hair, I don’t see any resemblance to Pedro Martinez at all. Bartolo Colon, on the other hand… :-)

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