Carlos Martinez
Carlos Martinez
27-Year-Old PitcherRP
St. Louis Cardinals
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Martinez seemingly opened the 2018 campaign in stellar fashion, pitching to a 1.62 ERA and 1.08 WHIP before the first of three disabled list visits interrupted his season. However, only 47 strikeouts with a bloated 22 walks in those 50 innings warned of an impending correction. After missing a month with a right lat strain, Martinez returned to post a 5.32 ERA and 1.73 WHIP with 26 walks in 46.2 frames before being felled with an oblique strain. He only missed one start, but a right shoulder strain sent him back to the DL. When Martinez returned, he worked out of the bullpen, eventually as closer and converted all five of his save chances in September. Despite a 1.47 ERA out of the bullpen, the plan is for Martinez to return to the rotation. Wait and see how Martinez looks in the spring before returning him to near-ace levels. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
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$Signed a five-year, $51 million contract extension with the Cardinals in February of 2017, avoiding arbitration. Contract includes $17 million team option ($500,000 buyout) for 2022 and $18 million team option ($500,000 buyout) for 2023.
Records second save
PSt. Louis Cardinals
June 16, 2019
Martinez pitched two scoreless innings in the eighth and ninth while allowing one hit and striking out two batters to earn a save during a 4-3 victory against the Mets on Sunday.
Cardinals closer Jordan Hicks hasn't pitched since Thursday, but after Martinez threw 14 pitches in the eighth Sunday, the Cardinals elected to stick with him for the ninth. While he does have two successful saves in his last four outings, Martinez has allowed four earned runs in his last eight appearances. He is 1-0 with two saves, 3.09 ERA, 0.94 WHIP and 11 strikeouts in 11.2 innings this season.
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Pitching Stats
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2017
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2017vs Left .251 742 152 87 160 33 4 18
Since 2017vs Right .206 683 193 48 126 22 2 15
2019vs Left .200 19 5 1 3 1 0 1
2019vs Right .167 27 6 3 4 1 0 0
2018vs Left .237 300 57 42 59 11 2 3
2018vs Right .216 221 60 18 41 8 0 2
2017vs Left .262 423 90 44 98 21 2 14
2017vs Right .204 435 127 27 81 13 2 13
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2017
ERA at Home
ERA at Home
ERA at Home
ERA at Home
Since 2017Home 2.98 1.20 166.1 9 5 3 8.9 3.4 0.6
Since 2017Away 3.89 1.31 169.0 12 12 4 9.6 3.9 1.1
2019Home 2.08 0.92 4.1 0 0 1 4.2 2.1 0.0
2019Away 3.68 0.95 7.1 1 0 1 11.0 3.7 1.2
2018Home 2.66 1.32 64.1 3 2 2 8.8 4.1 0.4
2018Away 3.64 1.38 54.1 5 4 3 8.9 5.1 0.3
2017Home 3.23 1.14 97.2 6 3 0 9.1 2.9 0.8
2017Away 4.02 1.30 107.1 6 8 0 9.9 3.3 1.5
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Stat Review
How does Carlos Martinez compare to other relievers?
This section compares his stats with all relief pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 30 innings)*. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.

* Exit Velocity, Barrels/BBE %, Balls Hit 95+ MPH %, and Spin Rate are benchmarked against this season's data (min 20 IP). See here for more exit velocity/barrels stats plus an explanation of current limitations with that data set.
  • K/BB
    Strikeout to walk ratio.
  • K/9
    Average strikeouts per nine innings.
  • BB/9
    Average walks per nine innings.
  • HR/9
    Average home runs allowed per nine innings.
  • Fastball
    Average fastball velocity.
  • ERA
    Earned run average. The average earned runs allowed per nine innings.
  • WHIP
    Walks plus hits per inning pitched.
    Batting average on balls in play. Measures how many balls in play against a pitcher go for hits.
  • GB/FB
    Groundball to flyball ratio. The higher the number, the more likely a pitcher is to induce groundballs.
  • Left On Base
    The percentage of base runners that a pitcher strands on base over the course of a season.
  • Exit Velocity
    The speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact.
  • Barrels/BBE
    The percentage of batted ball events resulting in a Barrel. A Barrel is a batted ball with similar exit velocity and launch angle to past ones that led to a minimum .500 batting average and 1.500 slugging percentage.
  • Spin Rate
    Spin Rate is the rate of spin on a baseball after it is released. It is measured in revolutions per minute (rpm).
  • Balls Hit 95+ MPH
    The percentage of batted balls hit that met or exceeded the 95 MPH threshold.
  • Swinging Strike
    The percentage of pitches that result in a swing and a miss.
96.2 mph
Left On Base
Exit Velocity
83.9 mph
Spin Rate
2091 rpm
Balls Hit 95+ MPH
Swinging Strike
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Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Carlos Martinez
NL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
31 days ago
Jan Levine is back with his latest NL FAAB recommendations while providing updates on a few injured achievers, including Scott Kingery approaching a return to the Phillies' lineup.
Fantasy Baseball Injury Report: Lingering Concerns Over Matz
37 days ago
Mets pitcher Steven Matz is on the IL with nerve discomfort in his arm, and although he’s eligible to return this week, Jeff Stotts cautions that he’s a risky player moving forward.
NL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
39 days ago
Jan Levine analyzes the top waiver-wire targets in the NL this week, including Colorado's Ian Desmond, who is finally heating up after a slow start to the season.
NL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
45 days ago
Jan Levine delivers this week's top NL FAAB picks, including Reds prospect Nick Senzel, who was called up Friday from Triple-A Louisville.
Fantasy Baseball Injury Report: Tatis Hurts Leg in Awkward Play
51 days ago
Jeff Stotts says that one of the league’s top prospects could miss a significant amount of time after injuring his leg during a freak play on Sunday.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
Those pesky homers. In 2017, Martinez whiffed more and walked fewer than the previous season, in fact setting a career high in strikeout percent (25.3). More flyballs and a spike in HR/FB resulted in a home run rate nearly double his career mark. Not much changed with pitch repertoire, but like many groundball pitchers, Martinez was victimized by the league-wide movement toward uppercut swings. Despite the additional homers, Martinez joined the 200-inning club for the first time. Being allowed to pitch into the seventh is important in today's landscape. If there's a concern, it's durability, though consecutive seasons with more than 30 starts should assuage those fears. Still just 26, there's another step for Martinez if he combats the increase in homers along with lowering his just-above-league-average walk rate (3.1 BB/9). A high WHIP keeps Martinez from the elite, but he still profiles as a fantasy ace. Oh yeah, ignore last season's low win total, as Martinez was a victim of low run support.
Yet again, Martinez dazzled on the mound for St. Louis. He finished the year with a 16-9 record to go along with a 3.04 ERA and 1.22 WHIP. Martinez managed to keep batters guessing at the plate, as he threw his 95 mph fastball just 58 percent of the time and regularly mixed in a slider, changeup, and curveball. He also continued forcing batters to hit grounders and recorded a GB/FB identical to 2015's mark of 2.49, which resulted in a HR/9 of just 0.69 and forcing 33 batters to ground into double plays, the second most in the league. Although he limited batters to a .233 batting average, a lack of control was a byproduct of his pitch variety and resulted in a walk rate that was nearly nine percent. His ERA likely will regress to a higher figure, but fortunately for the club and fantasy owners, Martinez will be only 25 years old when the 2017 campaign begins, so he still has time to further refine his arsenal and move into the ace conversation.
Martinez turned in a terrific 2015 in his first full year in the rotation, posting a 3.01 ERA and 1.29 WHIP while striking out 184 in 179.2 innings pitched as a 23-year-old. Martinez had his season cut short a couple weeks early due to a shoulder strain but should be fine for the spring, without the added pressure of competing for a rotation spot. His FIP of 3.21 and BABIP of .318 indicate that his 2015 numbers are for real. Martinez could be the Cardinals ace-in-waiting and at just 24 years old will likely slot in to the second or third spot in the rotation to start the season. He features a fastball that can approach 100 mph and terrific secondary stuff that should make a 200-plus strikeout campaign in 2016 a strong likelihood. He'll be a popular name on draft day as someone pegged to take another big step forward.
One of the Cardinals' best young flamethrowers, Martinez was extremely impressive as a starter last spring but the Cardinals opted to move him to the bullpen to start the season, where he stayed for the most part, making just seven spot starts versus a whopping 50 relief appearances. Martinez made it known several times that he would prefer to be a starter but that he would do whatever the teams asks of him, and it appears the Cardinals view him as their setup man moving forward into 2015. Martinez has probably pitched better as a starter but certainly has the stuff to work in the late innings for St. Louis. Perhaps the inconsistency of roles, moving from the bullpen to the rotation and back again several times didn't help the 23-year-old's numbers in 2014. Whatever his role may be going into 2015, he's still worth a spot on most fantasy rosters as he has enormous talent and potential.
Martinez was never given an extended look in any role until September when he really started to display just how talented he is. The 22-year-old struck out nearly a batter per inning, a stat that was trending up when the season came to a close. Scouts are split on whether Martinez will be a late-inning bullpen arm or a starter at this point but it looks as though he will have a chance to compete for the fifth spot in the rotation during spring training as the Cards attempt to maximize his value. Martinez figures to be a part of the Cardinals' pitching staff in 2014, where his extremely valuable skill set merits consideration regardless of his role on Opening Day.
Martinez handled the promotion to Double-A Springfield well, striking out 58 and walking 22 in 71.1 innings. Overall his walk rate was cut in half from its poor mark in 2011, as Martinez crept closer and closer to his big-league debut. That time could come in 2013, when Martinez will be just 21 years old. If the walk rate continues to improve, this could be a star in the making as he's considered by some to be the best pitching prospect in a rich St. Louis farm system.
For some reason, no one talks about the Cardinals having the best young pitching prospects, but with Shelby Miller, Tyrell Jenkins and Martinez not far away from joining Adam Wainwright and Jaime Garcia, St. Louis could have the best rotation in the bigs in five years. Martinez just turned 20, and while his command still needs a lot of work, his strikeout rate and home-run rate were both outstanding in his first year pitching in North America. If he gets his walk rate down, we could be looking at an ace, but he's still a few years away.
More Fantasy News
Notches first save
PSt. Louis Cardinals
June 2, 2019
Martinez tossed a perfect ninth inning Saturday to record his first save of the season in a 7-4 win over the Cubs.
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Mixed bag in bullpen role
PSt. Louis Cardinals
May 31, 2019
Martinez, who allowed two earned runs on a hit and two walks while also recording a strikeout over an inning in a win over the Phillies on Thursday , has a 5.40 ERA, a 1.60 WHIP and one hold over his first six relief appearances of the season.
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Not expected to start this year
PSt. Louis Cardinals
May 24, 2019
Martinez is not expected to be a rotation candidate at any point this season, manager Mike Shildt told MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM on Friday.
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Back from injured list
PSt. Louis Cardinals
May 17, 2019
Martinez (shoulder) was activated from the 10-day injured list ahead of Friday's game against Texas, Rob Rains of reports.
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Expected back Saturday
PSt. Louis Cardinals
May 16, 2019
Martinez (shoulder) will be activated from the 10-day injured list Saturday, Jenifer Langosch of reports.
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