For the second consecutive year, a former Nova Southeastern standout is heading to the World Series as a member of an MLB championship roster, after J.D. Martinez aided the Boston Red Sox to an American League Championship in his first season with the club.
An MVP candidate, Martinez led the league in the regular season with 130 RBI, ranked second with a .330 average and 43 home runs. In addition, across 150 regular-season games, the former Shark tied for third in hits (188) and fifth in runs (111), ranking sixth in on-base percentage (.402), second in slugging percentage (.629) and third in OPS (1.031). Batting third as designated hitter for Boston in the American League Championship Series against the Houston Astros, Martinez hit 5-for-18 with three runs and three RBI, including a third-inning home run in Game 5 off Justin Verlander that kicked off a 4-1 series-clinching victory for the Red Sox.
Martinez’s 2009 Nova Southeastern teammate, Mike Fiers, was on the roster for Houston last season as the Astros earned their first World Series.
Martinez’s three-year career at NSU (2007-09) was nothing short of phenomenal, setting the previous home run record (32) to close out his All-America junior season. A Miami native and Flanagan High School grad, Martinez batted .394 with a .691 slugging percentage and 142 career RBI during his time in a Sharks uniform. Drafted in the 20th round of the 2009 MLB Draft by Houston, he made his debut for the Astros in 2011, becoming the first Nova Southeastern product to reach the major league level.
Mentioned alongside local greats Alex Cora, Manny Machado, Yasmani Grandal and Chris Sale, Martinez was featured in a Sun Sentinel piece about South Florida stars in the World Series.
Martinez and the Red Sox open the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday night in historic Fenway Park, with game two scheduled for Wednesday in Boston, while games three and four are set for Friday and Saturday in L.A. The remaining Series games are slated for Saturday, Oct. 28, Tuesday, Oct. 30 and Wednesday, Oct. 31. First pitch for every game is scheduled for 8:09 p.m. ET and will be broadcast live on FOX.