The confidence and swagger that we’ve been accustomed to are now gone. The sight of seeing hitter’s knees buckle at the plate are gone too. Is this the end of an illustrious career for Pedro Martinez or just a bump in the road?
That’s the question Pedro asked himself after last night’s loss, his second straight lousy effort and third in his last five starts. Pedro Martinez is at a crossroads in his career. He can no longer pretend to be the pitcher he once was. Those days are sadly gone. But, many great pitchers before him have been able to resurrect their careers with guile, guts and know-how. If anybody can do it, certainly Pedro can.
Last night, Pedro sounded like an old prized fighter who was up against a younger and stronger boxer. He sounded as if he was on the ropes and only a couple of rounds away from a technical knockout. He sounded defeated.
"I’m not doing my job, and that’s something to worry about. I’m not helping myself in any given situation out there, and it’s time for me to start getting better, not getting worse."
"It seems like I’m getting worse periodically. So I’m going to have to make some adjustments and correct some of the stuff I’m doing. Spend a lot of time in the video room checking out what’s going on. Right now I feel like I’m caught in between."
"At this time in my career, it feels worse because you should be able to make better adjustments and do things in a better way. Have a better plan."
If Pedro doesn’t find that plan soon, the Mets may be planning for a long off-season. They already have one weak link in Oliver Perez, they can ill afford to have two-fifths of the rotation mired in uncertainty. Not if they have any hopes of clinching a division title and advancing through the post season.
Pedro doesn’t have to be his vintage self to help this team. He just needs to go out there and give the Mets a chance to win. I hope he finds his way.