Plans for Russell Martin to play in the World Baseball Classic have been scrapped. Martin had hoped to play for team Canada as a shortstop.
After initially sounding supportive of Martin’s decision to play shortstop – a position he has not played since high school – the Pirates began to show resistance.
“They both were uneasy about that,” Martin said, “and I simply didn’t want to catch. It’s just too much grind. The catcher’s out there the whole game, and it just takes your body so long to recover from catching 20 innings or so.”
Martin signed a two-year contract worth $17 million over the winter.
Instead of playing in the World Baseball Classic the 30-year-old Martin will work with the Pirates for whom he will catch for this season.
“I feel sorry for (Team Canada), but sometimes you just have to look out for what’s best for you. You have to make a personal choice. But I’m really sorry for how all this went down.”