But he’s also a World Series champion, having carried Boston to the summit of Major League Baseball. After overcoming the adversity, Martinez — on hand to celebrate the club’s 2004 title Tuesday — believes the Red Sox will endure this trying season.
“I was on a lot of teams where we had a lot of sore and painful defeats, but it all showed up the next year and we got better and better and better,” Martinez said. “This team, all they have to do is fix their character, come back next year and think that anything is possible, and start nice and fresh.
“Hopefully, management will make the adjustments they need to make, work on the character of the team a little bit more. I think the talent is basically there. They need to just work all together, pulling toward the same side and focus on it. I think it’s achievable.”
This year, of course, is the lowest moment in the franchise’s recent history. With a 69-85 record heading into Tuesday’s game, the Red Sox are destined to finish with their first losing season since 1997.
While the 2001 season didn’t result in a losing season, it still featured friction between players and former skipper Joe Kerrigan. Three years later, the Red Sox rallied to win their first championship in 86 years.
That’s why Martinez remains optimistic about the current club.
“They have to change some things,” Martinez said. “When things go wrong, you have to really look for the things that went wrong and fix them. The team has the tools to actually come back next year.”
Martinez certainly has the credentials to speak authoritatively.