COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. (CBS/AP) — Pedro Martinez was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame Sunday after a career in which he helped the Boston Red Sox end their World Series jinx.
For Martinez the moment was magical as scores in the crowd waved Dominican flags for one of their own. Martinez, who also delivered part of his speech in Spanish, and former Giants great Juan Marichal, elected in 1983, are the only Hall of Famers from the Caribbean nation.
Photos: Pedro Inducted Into Hall of Fame
At the end of the ceremony, Martinez beckoned Marichal to the stage and they held their flag high, one last emotional gesture as the crowd roared.
“We waited 32 years for another Dominican,” said Martinez, who wore a patch honoring his nation’s flag on one shoulder and another honoring the United States on the other. “I hope all Dominicans remember this. I don’t think the Dominican Republic will have a better image than me and Marichal on Father’s Day (in the Dominican Republic) to be up there.”
Martinez helped Boston break an 86-year-old World Series drought in 2004 and is the first pitcher inducted who played primarily for the Red Sox. He grew up with five brothers and sisters in a one-room home on the outskirts of Santo Domingo and credits brother Ramon, a starter with the Dodgers during Pedro’s rookie season in Los Angeles, as a key to his career.
“I have a second dad,” said Martinez, who won 117 games and two Cy Youngs in seven seasons pitching in hitter-friendly Fenway Park. “Ramon, you are my second dad. I followed in his footsteps and it led me to where I am today.”
Martinez also showed his admiration for Boston during his induction speech.
“Boston, I don’t have enough words to say how much I love you,” he said.
Martinez won three Cy Young Awards and finished with a 219-100 record over 18 years, a winning percentage of .687. He won five ERA titles and had a career mark of 2.93. His 3,154 strikeouts rank 13th on the career list.
Martinez went 16-9 in 2004 and helped the Red Sox win the World Series for the first time since 1918. He pitched seven shutout innings in Game 3 on the road in St. Louis. Martinez also pitched for the Dodgers, Montreal, the New York Mets and Philadelphia.
(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)