J.D. Martinez was the Red Sox’s prized acquisition this past offseason. He arrived in Boston with high expectations following an MVP caliber season in which he hit 45 HR for Detroit and Arizona, respectively. And while his tenure in red and white started off very slow (so slow, in fact, that some of the more pessimistic fans within Red Sox Nation began making comparisons to Pablo Sandoval), he’s begun to pick it up and find his way.
Over the last 5 games vs. Tampa and New York, Martinez has a SLG% of .732 and an OPS of 1.027. He has a .286 BABIP and has hit 78% of his contacted pitches hard (Fangraphs). If we look back at his individual at-bats over those last 5 games, we see a man who is swinging the bat really well and making great contact on almost every pitch he hits.
(Photo credit: Yardbarker)
Over that aforementioned span, Martinez has hit 2 home runs (1 being a 436 ft. grand slam), a double high off the Green Monster to deep left center, a triple to very deep center in the triangle, a sac fly also to deep center, a fly out to the warning track in right, and a pair of missile line drives that were both hit directly at Tampa outfielders.
His strike out % is still way too high at 41%, but in the past week he’s managed to raise his BA and OBP almost .100 points each, up to .250 and .295, respectively.
The hope here is that this recent run of good form, especially yesterday’s grand slam against the Yankees, will translate into an added notch of confidence for the slugger, and he’ll continue to improve his numbers and individual at-bats and become the feared power bat in the middle of the order that Boston signed him to be.