Agent says Pedro 'having fun again'
The agent, Fern Cuza, told the Web site that the three-time Cy Young Award winner has decided to return and pitch from the start of the season, rather than wait until midseason, as he did this year.
"In the playoffs, Pedro was having fun again," Cuza told FoxSports.com. "He was feeling no pain whatsoever. It was the first time in three years that he felt that way on the mound. Based on how he played, and how he responded, he's looking forward to playing next year."
Martinez played for the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic in spring 2009, but did not sign with a major league team right away, many of which were concerned about his age -- he turned 38 in October -- and his recent spate of injuries.
Instead, he auditioned for several teams as the season progressed, and waited for a desirable offer. On July 15, he signed a $1 million, one-year contract with the Phillies.
Cuza told FoxSports.com Martinez is "rejuvenated" after helping Philadelphia to the National League pennant, going 5-1 with a 3.63 ERA in nine starts, and the Phillies would be one of the teams Martinez would consider signing with for 2010.
"With the leadership he brings, and the way he approaches pitching, I think Pedro's realizing that he can be very effective in the big leagues without the 95-mph fastball," Cuza said, according to the Web site. "He can still get into the low 90s. With the location that he has, he can still be very effective."
Cuza said Martinez was suffering from the flu in Game 6 of the World Series, in which the right-hander allowed four runs, all earned, in just four innings against the New York Yankees, who clinched the Series title in that game.
"I think he lost 13 pounds," Cuza said, according to FoxSports.com. "When I saw him in Miami last week, he was still battling it. He said, 'I don't know what hit me.' I don't know how he took the mound that night. I didn't realize how sick he was."