While minor league pitcher Jarret Martin may not be on the radars of many general managers or analysts, the Los Angeles Dodgers are both elated and fortunate to have the 6-4 lefty in the farm system. Martin is making waves and catching a lot of eyes as the Dodgers continue their Spring Training workouts at Camelback Ranch.
Martin hails from Bakersfield, CA, a town just a two or three hour drive from Dodger Stadium and seems to fit in well with the organization. The reliever has received high praise from scouts and baseball writers and is touted as a “flamethrowing prospect” by Ken Gurnick. With a fastball that can reach into the upper 90s, Martin stands a chance to be one of the next up and coming relievers in the Dodgers’ bullpen.
The biggest hurdle Martin has to overcome is his inconsistency in hitting the strike zone. All too often, flamethrowers have failed out of baseball because batters start to catch up to their fastballs and they lack the inability to paint the corners.
Martin has indeed struggled with accuracy and posted bizarrely contradictory statistics in the recent past. In 2013, Martin had a decent time with the high-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes and started performing much better when switched to the bullpen about halfway through the season.
After the switch, Martin appeared in 15 games, had a 3.52 ERA and a 1.239 WHIP while holding his opponents to a .212 batting average. Following that stint, Martin was moved up to AA and pitched in 11 games while posting a 1.69 ERA. Although that seems fantastic, the fact that the lefty had a 2.156 WHIP is slightly disturbing.
Martin’s accuracy is an issue that needs to be taken care of, but I would not panic. The 24-year-old has only been coming out of the bullpen since June and still has plenty of time to figure out all the nuances of relieving. The positive takeaway from Martin’s high WHIP is the fact that he maintained a low ERA at the same time. What this means is that despite getting himself into trouble, the lefty was able to get himself out of a jam, a trait that great relievers need to possess.
Look for Jarret Martin to start popping up on radars everywhere in the near future. Keep your eyes and ears open for his name so that when people start taking notice of his great talent, you can tell them, “Martin? Yeah, I’ve known he was going to be good for a long time.”