No, he’s not the lead singer of Coldplay, but Chris Martin‘s story to make it to professional baseball is longer than he would have liked. Despite being drafted twice, first by the Detroit Tigers in the 18th round in 2004 and then by the Rockies in the 21st round in 2005 after his first year of community college, Martin never signed a pro contract and an injury in his sophmore year completely derailed his pitching career.
Michael Vega of the Boston Globe reported that after three years of working for UPS, Lowe’s in an appliance warehouse, Martin tried out for the Grand Prairie AirHogs in the independent American Association. Manager Pete Incaviglia not only gave Martin his first professional contract (paying $800 a month) but he contacted Red Sox scouts to take a look at him.
After signing with the Red Sox and dominating Class-A and High-A in his first season of affiliated baseball in 2011, Martin made it to Triple-A in 2013, throwing 51 innings in Pawtucket (after not allowing a run in 21 Double-A innings) with a 3.18 ERA, a 1.20 WHIP, only 10 walks and 47 strikeouts.
Martin experienced another first just a few days ago when he was traded to the Colorado Rockies along with major league reliever Franklin Morales in return for infielder Jonathan Herrera (pictured above).
Martin is likely thought of as a middle-relief pitcher even though his size (6’7″) and velocity (mid-90s) might want him to be otherwise. He gets a good, downwards angle on the ball and has very good control for someone as tall as he is. The knock on him is that his slider is only decent and that he’s not particularly deceptive.