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November 9, 2012 5:55 am

Raising Aces: The Good Old Days: Pedro Martinez


Doug Thorburn

Pedro's flawless repetition made his unparalleled career possible.

The greatest pitchers of the previous generation were dominant on a historical level, and the peak performance of Pedro Martinez might have been the greatest spectacle that the game has ever witnessed. He may have lacked the longevity of Roger Clemens, the consistency of Greg Maddux, or the biological advantages of Randy Johnson, but Pedro introduced the world to an unrivaled combination of intensity, precision, and power that baffled major-league hitters for over a decade.

Martinez lacked the size of his legendary counterparts, but efficient mechanics and incredible athleticism allowed him to get more out of his sub-six-foot frame than pitchers half a foot taller. His effectiveness was enabled by exceptional command of an explosive array of pitches, and he required ideal efficiency to maximize the impact of his pitching career. One need look no further than Pedro's brother, Ramon Martinez, to conceptualize the difference between raw genetic gifts and athletically-trained ability.

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