Bye Michael. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE
Finally, at long last, the Phillies blood pact with Michael Martinez has ended.
As part of reshuffling of the Phils’ 40-man roster, the team dropped the light-hitting reserve infielder from the Major League rolls, exposing him to waivers.
Unsurprisingly, Martinez managed to squeak through waivers (why no team wanted to pick up that .188 batting average over the last two seasons is a real mystery) and has been assigned to Triple A LeHigh Valley.
So while it’s obvious Mini Mart will never totally leave our lives, it appears the Phillies have finally realized what the rest of the world knew two weeks into Martinez’ career with the team.
Michael Martinez sucks.
Mini Mart is one of the worst baseball players, if not the worst baseball player, in the National League. His .188 batting average the last two years is the lowest of any player with at least 350 plate appearances during that time.
Until Martinez came along, the worst player in modern Phillies history was Steve Jeltz. And in my mind, Jeltz will always be king of the epic fail, if only because Phils management stubbornly presented him to us as a starting shortstop for parts of five years.
It’s hard to imagine exactly why the Phils held a roster space for Mikey for so long. At least in 2011 it made the tiniest iota of sense. The Phils had to keep him on the active roster or risk sending him back to the Nationals.
Of course, teams wouldn’t exactly have been lining up to claim him. Probably wouldn’t have been a problem.
But the thinking of most fans was that once the 2011 season was over, Phillies management would realize the utter suckitude of Martinez and banish him to the minors forever, or perhaps even cut him outright. Surely there was a reserve infielder somewhere in the world with a batting average over the Mendoza Line.
Yet he stayed. Even with an injury that sidelined him for most of the first half of the season, he was omnipresent.
And now, as a member of the Iron Pigs, he’s just a Chase Utley injury away from another trip down the Northeast Extension. So it’s entirely possible (nay, probable) that we will see more of Martinez again in 2013.
In fact, it would be healthiest for all of us if we just accepted a sobering realization.
We will never be fully free of Michael Martinez. He’s like a bad case of herpes. He will never fully go away.
He will be with us forever.
Until then, enjoy him, LeHigh Valley! He’s all yours.