Friday afternoon will mark the end of nearly 500 days of bummer for Detroit Tigers‘ designated hitter Victor Martinez.
And the Tigers’ fans Joseph Gordon-love-it.
The injury Martinez sustained during the last off-season left a huge literal and metaphoric hole in the 2012 Tigers’ lineup. The effect was somewhat abated by the addition of the also large and heavy-hitting Prince Fielder, but, now, with Martinez returning, the 2013 Tigers have solidified their order as a modern-day ‘Murders’ Row’.
Last season, former Detroit designated hitter Delmon Young tried to fill in during V-Mart’s absence, but, in reality, Young’s average quality and full figure are two traits far more indicative of embodying a Kmart than a V-Mart. Young did show up for the playoffs, as he strangely always does, but he knew that he would need to find a new team after the 2012 campaign ended.
In short, Martinez is excited to be back. Tigers’ skipper Jim Leyland commented that, “Victor is one of those guys who just has so much appreciation for the game, and he likes to play it so much—he’s absolutely in hog heaven right now.” Leyland would later add, “He’s [Martinez] is just thrilled to be back in uniform and out on the field. He’s like a kid.”
Martinez corroborated with Leyland’s sentiments, “I don’t think I’ve ever been this excited for a spring training game as I am today about tomorrow.”
Like fans at a John Fogerty concert, or me anytime I board an airplane, Martinez can enthusiastically say tomorrow without reservation, “Put me in, Coach; I’m ready to play.”
Justin Gawel is a amateur chili enthusiast who mainly writes for Rant Sports about the Detroit Tigers. Follow him on Google+ for all of his article postings.