Martinez surprised the team Tuesday by showing up early for
spring training, 10 days before the first scheduled workout for
pitchers, catchers and players coming off injuries. He had said he
would arrive on the voluntary reporting date (Feb. 17), but later
decided to make the short trip from his home in Miami.
"I'm just here to work out," Martinez said. "I need to
continue working just like I was doing in the Dominican. And
there's no better place to do it since I live so close."
The 33-year-old Martinez lifted weights and played long toss,
and plans to throw off a mound on Wednesday.
The former Red Sox ace signed a $53 million, four-year contract
with New York in December and wanted to set an example for his new
teammates. This offseason, Mets general manager Omar Minaya also
added free-agent center fielder Carlos Beltran and first baseman
Doug Mientkiewicz, Martinez's former teammate in Boston.
"The new Mets are going to [have] a new attitude," Martinez
said. "It's going to be a team that went from last place in other
years to being a team that's really going to compete and be in the
middle of the race."
Martinez spent seven seasons with Boston and helped the Red Sox
win their first World Series title in 86 years last season. The
three-time Cy Young Award winner is 182-76 with a 2.71 ERA in 13
seasons with Los Angeles, Montreal and Boston.