Baltimore Orioles vs Boston Red Sox: 5 players to watch

(Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
(Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /
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Baltimore Orioles
(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /

J.D. Martinez, DH/OF

Martinez and the Red Sox seemed to be a match made in free agency heaven from the very start, but that didn’t prevent the late-blooming slugger from lingering on the market until February 26. With a five-year, $110 million contract, the Florida native was one of just three players to pull in nine figures over the offseason, and he’s wasted little time proving that it was a good deal for both sides.

After slashing .302/.366/.741 with the Diamondbacks in the second half of 2017, Martinez has kept it going in Boston, posting a .344/.395/.644 line through 44 games. He’s not hitting for quite as much power, but taking into account the favorable conditions at Chase Field, he’s actually performing better this year, with his 171 OPS+ just edging his 170 mark from last summer.

There are no signs that the barrage will stop any time soon. Martinez has batted .356 with seven home runs since the calendar turned to May, including this go-ahead bomb off of Dellin Betances:

Suffice it to say that the Orioles pitchers will have their work cut out this weekend. Martinez may not be able to sustain a .344 average all season, but with his power, every one of his at bats is worth watching.