“When I was playing with him he was like a mid-to-upper 80s guy,” Middlebrooks said.
“He was 16 years old so that’s still really good for that age. He was just a tall, skinny kid. His senior year my dad was coaching at my old high school and still coaching against him and said, ‘Hey, Mike’s turning out to be a good ballplayer.’ He ended up getting a scholarship to Texas A&M and put on some weight, got even taller — he’s 6-6 now — and started throwing 95.”
Just for the record ... Mallett didn’t play baseball past middle school.
“He swears he can throw 100, of course,” Middlebrooks said, smiling while talking about Mallett. “But he’s playing his sport. He’s in the right sport.”
Martinez played for Sox
St. Louis eighth-inning reliever Carlos Martinez originally was signed by the Boston Red Sox in 2009. But his contract was voided when he failed a Major League Baseball’s identity investigation.
He was signed by the Cardinals after his year suspension.
The failed investigation reportedly happened because of confusion over his true surname when he was raised by his grandmother.
The 22-year-old Dominican Republic native has a 2.70 ERA in 6.2 innings this postseason.
“Carlos has electric stuff, there’s no question about that,” St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. “But he is an incredible advocate behind the plate. How this all started, it happened in Milwaukee where Carlos came in to close out a game and the first couple of pitches didn’t look right. Yadi (Molina) quickly went out there and had a couple of things to say, and had some force behind him. The next thing you know, there’s no turning back.”
Lackey in Game 2
John Lackey will start Game 2 for the Red Sox tomorrow against Wacha.