Thursday, July 12, 2018

PITTSBURGH – Dave Martinez, 53, played in the major leagues for 16 years, and hit better than .300 two years in a row for the Chicago White Sox in the 1990s.

While the Nationals manager never played in an All-Star game, he has been part of two Midsummer Classics as a coach under manager Joe Maddon. He will be involved in his third on Tuesday as a coach when Nationals Park hosts the 2018 All-Star contest as Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts guides the N.L. squad.

Tampa Bay won the American League title in 2008 so that coaching staff was part of the field staff for the American League the following year.

Martinez was the bench coach under Maddon when the Chicago Cubs won the World Series in 2016 and the two of them were part of the National League coaching staff for the All-Star game last year in Miami.

Roberts is the manager this year of the Nationals League since the Dodgers made it to the World Series last year, against Houston.

So what does Martinez remember about his All-Star games?

“For me, it is just the caliber of players who are in the game,” Martinez told The Washington Times. “I know last year I spoke to Joey Votto (of the Cincinnati Reds) for a long period of time. It was a great conversation. I got to know a lot about him and his thoughts on the game. It was pretty cool. You take in the whole experience and the moment and watch a lot of great players.”

The 2009 American League All-Star team won 4-3 over the National League.

Last year the National League All-Star team lost 2-1 to the American League.

Now the first-year Nationals manager will get to be at his home park Tuesday.

“I am going to enjoy it,” Martinez said. “I know the fans will enjoy it. It is going to be a lot of fun. D.C. deserves it. I live pretty close to the stadium and they were setting up (for the game last week), and they have a lot of things going on.”

Martinez, a native of New York, broke into the majors with Cubs in 1986 and his last year as a player was in 2001 with the Atlanta Braves.

He hit .276 with 91 homers and 183 steals in 1918 big league games. Martinez hit a career-high 12 homers for the White Sox in 1997 and the year before hit a career-high .318, also with the White Sox. Martinez got the first hit in the history of Tampa Bay in 1998.

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