Carlos Martinez
Carlos Martinez
27-Year-Old PitcherSP
St. Louis Cardinals
Out
Injury Shoulder
Est. Return 3/19/2019
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
$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.
Shut down for two weeks
PSt. Louis Cardinals
Shoulder
February 19, 2019
Martinez (shoulder) will not be allowed to throw for two weeks, Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
The Cardinals are concerned that Martinez's arm strength is not where it should be, though an MRI taken Monday revealed no structural damage, Langosch reports. That suggests he's unlikely to miss a large portion of time, but Martinez will need to build back up following the two-week period, leaving him less than a month to get ready for Opening Day. Martinez made three trips to the DL last season while battling shoulder, oblique and lat injuries. It's certainly disconcerting to see those issues resurface so early in the spring.
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Pitching Stats
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2016
 
 
-19%
BAA vs RHP
2018
 
 
-9%
BAA vs RHP
2017
 
 
-22%
BAA vs RHP
2016
 
 
-19%
BAA vs RHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2016vs Left .254 1164 231 134 257 48 5 28
Since 2016vs Right .207 1024 277 67 191 30 2 19
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
2016vs Left .256 441 84 48 100 16 1 11
2016vs Right .207 368 90 22 69 9 0 4
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2016
 
 
-4%
ERA at Home
2018
 
 
-27%
ERA at Home
2017
 
 
-20%
ERA at Home
2016
 
 
-32%
ERA on Road
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2016Home 3.23 1.21 261.0 16 12 2 8.5 3.0 0.8
Since 2016Away 3.36 1.30 256.0 20 14 3 9.1 4.0 0.8
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
2016Home 3.60 1.20 100.0 7 7 0 7.7 2.3 1.1
2016Away 2.45 1.25 95.1 9 2 0 8.3 4.2 0.3
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Stat Review
How does Carlos Martinez compare to other starting pitchers?
This section compares his stats with all starting pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 120 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.
K/BB
1.95
 
K/9
8.9
 
BB/9
4.6
 
HR/9
0.4
 
Fastball
93.6 mph
 
ERA
3.11
 
WHIP
1.35
 
BABIP
.304
 
GB/FB
1.80
 
Strand %
76.8%
 
Advanced Pitching Stats
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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
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163 days ago
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
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
Expected to transition back to rotation
PSt. Louis Cardinals
October 15, 2018
Martinez is expected to transition back to a starting role in 2019, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
ANALYSIS
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Notches fifth save
PSt. Louis Cardinals
September 29, 2018
Martinez threw a perfect inning and earned his fifth save of the season in Saturday's 2-1 victory over the Cubs.
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Earns eighth win
PSt. Louis Cardinals
September 22, 2018
Martinez (8-6) struck out three in a 5-4 win over the Giants on Saturday, giving up two hits and two walks over two innings of work.
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Collects fourth save
PSt. Louis Cardinals
September 21, 2018
Martinez earned his fourth save of the season in Friday's 5-3 victory over the Giants. He allowed one hit and struck out two over one inning of work.
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Picks up third save
PSt. Louis Cardinals
September 10, 2018
Martinez secured his third save of the season in Monday's win over the Pirates. He went one inning and allowed a run on two hits while striking out two.
ANALYSIS
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