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sox1970
01-25-2006, 05:50 AM
He was the 1st baseman before Frank took over in 1990.

CARACAS, Venezuela -- Carlos Martinez, who played seven Major League seasons, died on Tuesday at his home in Venezuela at age 40, his wife said.

Martinez, an infielder for the White Sox, Indians and Angels from 1988-93 and 1995, died at his home in the coastal state of Vargas, about 20 kilometers north of the capital Caracas, Evelyn de Martinez told reporters.
She declined to specify the cause of death, although she said he had suffered for years from the same disease which forced him to retire from baseball in 1998.
"He was hospitalized many times until last week, when they told me nothing else could be done," De Martinez said. "He wanted to spend his final days here at home with his family."
"Cafe" Martinez, as he was affectionately known because of his penchant for Venezuelan coffee, began his professional career at 18 in his home, port city of La Guaira, with Los Tiburones, and was signed that same year by the New York Yankees as an amateur free agent.
He was traded in 1986 to the White Sox, for whom he made his Major League debut two years later in the last month of the regular season as a third baseman. Undermined by injuries, he finished with a MLB career batting average of .258 with 25 home runs, and 161 RBIs.

SOX ADDICT '73
01-25-2006, 07:58 AM
CARACAS, Venezuela -- Carlos Martinez, who played seven Major League seasons, died on Tuesday at his home in Venezuela at age 40, his wife said...
I'm sorry he's passed, but my lasting memory of Carlos Martinez was of he and Melido Perez during pre-game warmups at Old Comiskey. They were chatting outside the Sox dugout 10 feet from a group of kids (myself included) holding out baseballs, cards, and pens, and they refused to sign a single autograph. After about fifteen minutes, they just walked away.

D. TODD
01-25-2006, 09:02 AM
I just remember him looking too tall for 3rd base. I think he was about 6'6, but he was so skinny he seemed about 7'0 trying to get down on those grounders to third. For some odd reason I seem to remember him playing well against the Indians. Not sure if he actually did or just had a few good games/big hits that stick out in my warped memory. Anyway 40 is awful young to pass away after dealing with a prolonged disease. R.I.P. Carlos.

Banix12
01-25-2006, 09:02 AM
I'm sorry he's passed, but my lasting memory of Carlos Martinez was of he and Melido Perez during pre-game warmups at Old Comiskey. They were chatting outside the Sox dugout 10 feet from a group of kids (myself included) holding out baseballs, cards, and pens, and they refused to sign a single autograph. After about fifteen minutes, they just walked away.

My experience was different as I acutally got his autograph.

soxinem1
01-25-2006, 10:12 AM
Carlos was actually a friendly aquaintance of mine during his time with the team. But I remember he was quite the hot head too. I remember once at the old players parking lot at Comiskey he came out and some heckler asked him if the bat he was carrying the same one he used on the security guard.

This was in reference to an altercation he had a little while before then. He went up to this guy, chewed him out, then made his way around the fence. I went up to him and cooled him down a bit, then he sort of smiled, we patted each other on the shoulder, and he went to his car. If I remember right, Melido Perez asked what I said to him to calm him down, I told him this:

Guys like that want you to come after them just so they can take you to court for money. Just walk away.

In 1989 I thought this guy would be a great hitter, his swing was real good. I never thought he would be a great power hitter, but a doubles kind of guy. The bad thing was that he couldn't play defense anywhere. He was a SS with the NYY in the minors and made errors galore. But even after the 1989 season, when he hit .300 and made the All-Rookie Team, he was quite insecure. All the talk in ST 1990 was Ventura at 3B, Calderon switching to LF, Pasqua in RF, Johnson in CF, Dave Gallagher a backup OF, and Kittle and Walker 1B/DH, in essence leaving Carlos with nowhere to play regularly. I know that left him very insecure, especially after his good rookie year.

Then a young Big Hurt tearing up ST didn't make it easier. Most of the sportswriters were clanging for Torborg and Himes to make Thomas the 1B, but they ended up putting Martinez there, especially after they gave Walker about 4-5 at bats the first month of the season. But when he didn't hit, he was relegated to the bench and out of the organization by that winter.

It's a shame, 40 is way to young.

ondafarm
01-25-2006, 11:59 AM
Quietly, at age 40 in his home in Venezuela.

He wasn't a great player for the Sox but I remember those huge feet of his and how Hawk would joke that he'd make 'skate saves' at third.




http://chicago.whitesox.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/article.jsp?ymd=20060125&content_id=1300333&vkey=news_cws&fext=.jsp&c_id=cws

veeter
01-25-2006, 12:08 PM
Any idea what his illness was? Man, 40 is waaaay too young.

Sargeant79
01-25-2006, 12:15 PM
Sorry to hear that. IIRC, he had a really nice rookie year in 1989 when I was a kid. I believe he was second or third in ROY voting that year.

tlebar318
01-25-2006, 06:43 PM
Wow-
I am 40 myself---this hits too close to home. R.I.P. Carlos-:(:

Wimpy
01-25-2006, 07:23 PM
RIP Carlos. I remember that catch he made on a foul ball when he fell into the stands. I still see that on highlights.

thomas35forever
01-25-2006, 07:23 PM
I only know him for hitting the ball that went off Canseco's head.

Wsoxmike59
01-25-2006, 08:10 PM
RIP Carlos. I remember that catch he made on a foul ball when he fell into the stands. I still see that on highlights.

I remember that too, but wasn't it the camera well he fell in to going after a foul ball a la Juan Uribe?

I also remember him hitting a HR during a game in Cleveland where a swarm of gnats invaded old Cleveland Municipal Stadium. (I mean millions of 'em!)

I remember Tom Paciorek joking that to hit the ball out Carlos had to hit 'em THROUGH THE GNATS!

TheKittle
01-26-2006, 12:45 PM
To think Carlos and Ivan are both now dead is just too weird. I don't think Ivan was much older than 40 when he got shot.