After an early exit from his last start on July 30 with an apparent injury, the Cardinals announced today that Carlos Martinez will be used out of the bullpen for the rest of the 2018 season. This will hopefully prevent any further injury.
Martinez as a starter in 2018
Martinez started out this season pitching very well, but after his first DL stint, he began to struggle. He finally seemed to have things turned around only to hit the shelf again with another injury. In the 18 starts, he did make, Carlos went 6-6 with a 3.41 ERA. He also put up a 3.65 WHIP, 1.375 WHIP, struck out 98 batters through 100.1 innings and totaled a 1.3 WAR.
This won’t be the first time Carlos Martinez has pitched out of the bullpen. In the first two years of his career, he made 70 appearances as a reliever. Since 2014 though, he’s made two.
Martinez did have success as a relief pitcher. In 85.2 bullpen innings, he’s posted a 3.89 ERA, 1.319 WHIP and held opposing batters to a .339 SLG and a tOPS+ of 98. The numbers bear out that he’s been better as a starter, but for those that remember him early in his career, he was a lot of fun to watch out of the back end of the pen.
It will be interesting to see how well Carlos does back in a late-inning role, potentially. He could be a good weapon for Mike Shildt in big situations. Also, if the Redbirds manage the postseason, Martinez has experience that most of their current pen lacks.
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