Carlos Martinez
Carlos Martinez
28-Year-Old PitcherRP
St. Louis Cardinals
2020 Fantasy Outlook
Martinez has transitioned from a full-time starter to a closer in just two seasons, though he says he's hoping to start again in 2020. He started 32 games in 2017 with solid results, but moved to the bullpen as durability was a concern. Even 2019 got off to a rough start with a right rotator cuff strain in camp that delayed the start of his season until mid-May. He had just three saves before the break, so the 21 he had down the stretch around a few rough appearances was impressive. Martinez still needs to reduce his walk rate as he does not strike out enough batters to get away with the free passes. He finished out September on an encouraging note, going 8-for-8 in saves while holding hitters to a .167 average with a 5:1 K:BB. The question has never been about his potential, but rather his ability to fully reach it. We like him less if he does indeed attempt to stretch back out. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a five-year, $51 million contract extension with the Cardinals in February of 2017, avoiding arbitration. Contract includes $17 million team option ($500,000 buyout) for 2022 and $18 million team option ($500,000 buyout) for 2023.
No issues after first outing
PSt. Louis Cardinals
February 24, 2020
Martinez, who threw 34 pitches Sunday in a Grapefruit League tie against the Mets, emerged from the outing without any shoulder issues and played catch Monday, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
The right-hander is vying for a return to the starting rotation this spring, and with Miles Mikolas (forearm) slated to miss the start of the regular season, Martinez looks to have a clear path to his goal. The veteran's outing against New York was a mixed bag, with Martinez cruising through his first frame before surrendering a pair of walks that helped lead to two earned runs in the next inning. Manager Mike Shildt has emphasized that how Martinez recovers and prepares between outings will be of overriding importance in determining if he can reclaim a rotation spot this season. "I think games are going to matter, of course," Shildt said. "It's just really about what he does during the work and how he recovers in between the games that's really going to dictate as we try to ramp him up."
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Pitching Stats
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2019
2018
2017
2019 MLB Game Log
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2018 MLB Game Log
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2017 MLB Game Log
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Pitching Appearances Breakdown
Average Pitch Count
16
Last 10 Games
19
Last 5 Games
18
How many pitches does Carlos Martinez generally throw?
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
What part of the game does Carlos Martinez generally pitch?
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
% Games Reaching Innings Threshold
% Games By Number of Innings Pitched
Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-17%
BAA vs RHP
2019
 
 
-12%
BAA vs RHP
2018
 
 
-9%
BAA vs RHP
2017
 
 
-22%
BAA vs RHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2017vs Left .250 811 171 95 175 36 4 18
Since 2017vs Right .208 768 216 54 143 23 2 16
2019vs Left .237 88 24 9 18 4 0 1
2019vs Right .208 112 29 9 21 2 0 1
2018vs Left .237 300 57 42 59 11 2 3
2018vs Right .216 221 60 18 41 8 0 2
2017vs Left .262 423 90 44 98 21 2 14
2017vs Right .204 435 127 27 81 13 2 13
More Splits View More Split Stats
Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-29%
ERA at Home
2019
 
 
-60%
ERA at Home
2018
 
 
-27%
ERA at Home
2017
 
 
-20%
ERA at Home
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2017Home 2.84 1.17 186.2 11 6 14 9.0 3.3 0.6
Since 2017Away 3.98 1.34 185.1 13 13 15 9.8 3.9 1.1
2019Home 1.82 0.93 24.2 2 1 12 8.8 2.6 0.0
2019Away 4.56 1.44 23.2 2 1 12 11.0 4.2 0.8
2018Home 2.66 1.32 64.1 3 2 2 8.8 4.1 0.4
2018Away 3.64 1.38 54.1 5 4 3 8.9 5.1 0.3
2017Home 3.23 1.14 97.2 6 3 0 9.1 2.9 0.8
2017Away 4.02 1.30 107.1 6 8 0 9.9 3.3 1.5
More Splits View More Split Stats
Stat Review
How does Carlos Martinez compare to other relievers?
This section compares his stats with all relief pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 30 innings)*. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.

* Exit Velocity, Barrels/BBE %, Balls Hit 95+ MPH %, and Spin Rate are benchmarked against 2019 data (min 30 IP). See here for more exit velocity/barrels stats plus an explanation of current limitations with that data set.
  • K/BB
    Strikeout to walk ratio.
  • K/9
    Average strikeouts per nine innings.
  • BB/9
    Average walks per nine innings.
  • HR/9
    Average home runs allowed per nine innings.
  • Fastball
    Average fastball velocity.
  • ERA
    Earned run average. The average earned runs allowed per nine innings.
  • WHIP
    Walks plus hits per inning pitched.
  • BABIP
    Batting average on balls in play. Measures how many balls in play against a pitcher go for hits.
  • GB/FB
    Groundball to flyball ratio. The higher the number, the more likely a pitcher is to induce groundballs.
  • Left On Base
    The percentage of base runners that a pitcher strands on base over the course of a season.
  • Exit Velocity
    The speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact.
  • Barrels/BBE
    The percentage of batted ball events resulting in a Barrel. A Barrel is a batted ball with similar exit velocity and launch angle to past ones that led to a minimum .500 batting average and 1.500 slugging percentage.
  • Spin Rate
    Spin Rate is the rate of spin on a baseball after it is released. It is measured in revolutions per minute (rpm).
  • Balls Hit 95+ MPH
    The percentage of batted balls hit that met or exceeded the 95 MPH threshold.
  • Swinging Strike
    The percentage of pitches that result in a swing and a miss.
K/BB
2.94
 
K/9
9.9
 
BB/9
3.4
 
HR/9
0.4
 
Fastball
95.8 mph
 
ERA
3.17
 
WHIP
1.18
 
BABIP
.308
 
GB/FB
2.48
 
Left On Base
72.0%
 
Exit Velocity
87.1 mph
 
Barrels/BBE
5.0%
 
Spin Rate
2052 rpm
 
Balls Hit 95+ MPH
31.4%
 
Swinging Strike
13.2%
 
Advanced Pitching Stats
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Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
Martinez seemingly opened the 2018 campaign in stellar fashion, pitching to a 1.62 ERA and 1.08 WHIP before the first of three disabled list visits interrupted his season. However, only 47 strikeouts with a bloated 22 walks in those 50 innings warned of an impending correction. After missing a month with a right lat strain, Martinez returned to post a 5.32 ERA and 1.73 WHIP with 26 walks in 46.2 frames before being felled with an oblique strain. He only missed one start, but a right shoulder strain sent him back to the DL. When Martinez returned, he worked out of the bullpen, eventually as closer and converted all five of his save chances in September. Despite a 1.47 ERA out of the bullpen, the plan is for Martinez to return to the rotation. Wait and see how Martinez looks in the spring before returning him to near-ace levels.
Those pesky homers. In 2017, Martinez whiffed more and walked fewer than the previous season, in fact setting a career high in strikeout percent (25.3). More flyballs and a spike in HR/FB resulted in a home run rate nearly double his career mark. Not much changed with pitch repertoire, but like many groundball pitchers, Martinez was victimized by the league-wide movement toward uppercut swings. Despite the additional homers, Martinez joined the 200-inning club for the first time. Being allowed to pitch into the seventh is important in today's landscape. If there's a concern, it's durability, though consecutive seasons with more than 30 starts should assuage those fears. Still just 26, there's another step for Martinez if he combats the increase in homers along with lowering his just-above-league-average walk rate (3.1 BB/9). A high WHIP keeps Martinez from the elite, but he still profiles as a fantasy ace. Oh yeah, ignore last season's low win total, as Martinez was a victim of low run support.
Yet again, Martinez dazzled on the mound for St. Louis. He finished the year with a 16-9 record to go along with a 3.04 ERA and 1.22 WHIP. Martinez managed to keep batters guessing at the plate, as he threw his 95 mph fastball just 58 percent of the time and regularly mixed in a slider, changeup, and curveball. He also continued forcing batters to hit grounders and recorded a GB/FB identical to 2015's mark of 2.49, which resulted in a HR/9 of just 0.69 and forcing 33 batters to ground into double plays, the second most in the league. Although he limited batters to a .233 batting average, a lack of control was a byproduct of his pitch variety and resulted in a walk rate that was nearly nine percent. His ERA likely will regress to a higher figure, but fortunately for the club and fantasy owners, Martinez will be only 25 years old when the 2017 campaign begins, so he still has time to further refine his arsenal and move into the ace conversation.
Martinez turned in a terrific 2015 in his first full year in the rotation, posting a 3.01 ERA and 1.29 WHIP while striking out 184 in 179.2 innings pitched as a 23-year-old. Martinez had his season cut short a couple weeks early due to a shoulder strain but should be fine for the spring, without the added pressure of competing for a rotation spot. His FIP of 3.21 and BABIP of .318 indicate that his 2015 numbers are for real. Martinez could be the Cardinals ace-in-waiting and at just 24 years old will likely slot in to the second or third spot in the rotation to start the season. He features a fastball that can approach 100 mph and terrific secondary stuff that should make a 200-plus strikeout campaign in 2016 a strong likelihood. He'll be a popular name on draft day as someone pegged to take another big step forward.
One of the Cardinals' best young flamethrowers, Martinez was extremely impressive as a starter last spring but the Cardinals opted to move him to the bullpen to start the season, where he stayed for the most part, making just seven spot starts versus a whopping 50 relief appearances. Martinez made it known several times that he would prefer to be a starter but that he would do whatever the teams asks of him, and it appears the Cardinals view him as their setup man moving forward into 2015. Martinez has probably pitched better as a starter but certainly has the stuff to work in the late innings for St. Louis. Perhaps the inconsistency of roles, moving from the bullpen to the rotation and back again several times didn't help the 23-year-old's numbers in 2014. Whatever his role may be going into 2015, he's still worth a spot on most fantasy rosters as he has enormous talent and potential.
Martinez was never given an extended look in any role until September when he really started to display just how talented he is. The 22-year-old struck out nearly a batter per inning, a stat that was trending up when the season came to a close. Scouts are split on whether Martinez will be a late-inning bullpen arm or a starter at this point but it looks as though he will have a chance to compete for the fifth spot in the rotation during spring training as the Cards attempt to maximize his value. Martinez figures to be a part of the Cardinals' pitching staff in 2014, where his extremely valuable skill set merits consideration regardless of his role on Opening Day.
Martinez handled the promotion to Double-A Springfield well, striking out 58 and walking 22 in 71.1 innings. Overall his walk rate was cut in half from its poor mark in 2011, as Martinez crept closer and closer to his big-league debut. That time could come in 2013, when Martinez will be just 21 years old. If the walk rate continues to improve, this could be a star in the making as he's considered by some to be the best pitching prospect in a rich St. Louis farm system.
For some reason, no one talks about the Cardinals having the best young pitching prospects, but with Shelby Miller, Tyrell Jenkins and Martinez not far away from joining Adam Wainwright and Jaime Garcia, St. Louis could have the best rotation in the bigs in five years. Martinez just turned 20, and while his command still needs a lot of work, his strikeout rate and home-run rate were both outstanding in his first year pitching in North America. If he gets his walk rate down, we could be looking at an ace, but he's still a few years away.
More Fantasy News
Throws full bullpen Saturday
PSt. Louis Cardinals
February 15, 2020
Martinez, who's vying to return to the starting rotation on a full-time basis, threw a complete bullpen session Saturday morning, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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No restrictions to begin spring
PSt. Louis Cardinals
February 12, 2020
Martinez (shoulder) reported to spring training this week without any restrictions for his throwing program, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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Will compete for starting role
PSt. Louis Cardinals
Shoulder
January 28, 2020
The Cardinals plan to have Martinez (shoulder) compete for a rotation spot when spring training opens, though he'll likely assume closing duties in the event the coaching staff determines he's unfit to handle a starter's workload, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
ANALYSIS
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Cleared to throw off mound
PSt. Louis Cardinals
Shoulder
January 18, 2020
Martinez (shoulder) will begin throwing off a mound Tuesday, Anne Rogers of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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Hoping to start
PSt. Louis Cardinals
Shoulder
November 5, 2019
Martinez (shoulder) would prefer to be a starter next season, David Solomon of 590 The Fan reports.
ANALYSIS
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