After posting a 17-8 record with 13 complete games, a 1.90 ERA, and 305 strikeouts for Montreal in 1997, Pedro Martinez earned his first Cy Young award; the following season, the young pitcher was wearing a Boston uniform and making an immediate impact with his new club. In his first season with the Red Sox, Martinez won 19 games, posted a 2.89 ERA, and struck out 251 batters to help the Red Sox reach the playoffs as the wild card.
Unbelievably, he did even better the following season, earning 23 wins, amassing a 2.07 ERA, and striking out a club-record 313 batters, a strikeout ratio per nine innings pitched of 13.20, while walking just 37 batters, a strikeout-to-walk ratio of 8.46, to win his second Cy Young award. One other highlight that season was the honor of starting the All-Star game, hosted at Fenway Park, for the American League and he responded with five strikeouts in two innings of work, earning MVP honors for the game.
2000 was another great season for Martinez as he posted an 18-6 record with an eye-popping 1.74 ERA and struck out 284 batters while walking just 32. He also pitched seven complete games and threw four of them for shutouts, earning him his third Cy Young. After a shoulder injury early in the 2001 season limited him to just 18 appearances, Martinez returned in 2002 and went 20-4 with a 2.26 ERA to finish second in the Cy Young vote behind Barry Zito of Oakland.
Over his final two seasons with Boston, he won 30 more games and helped the team reach the playoffs both times. In his final game with Boston and his only World Series appearance, he tossed shutout baseball for seven innings to help the Red Sox win Game Three of the 2004 World Series in St. Louis and eventually the club’s first title in 86 years. Following the season, Martinez left Boston as a free agent and signed with the New York Mets, having won 117 games for the Red Sox while posting a .760 winning percentage and 1683 strikeouts in his seven seasons with the club.