Boston Red Sox: 30 Greatest Players in Team History

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5: Pedro Martinez, SP (1998-2004)

Arguably the most dominant pitcher of his era, Pedro Martinez is the greatest pitcher in Red Sox history. His seven-year stretch with the Red Sox was not the lengthiness, but it carried the most impact. If you needed to win one game, Red Sox era Pedro is not only the easy choice if you are limited to Red Sox pitchers, but may be the best selection when every pitcher in MLB history.

Simply put, his ability to go in and completely shut down an offense during this time is unrivaled.

Martinez made his Boston debut in 1998, coming off of a National League Cy Young winning season with the Montreal Expos. Martinez immediately dominated for the Red Sox, finishing 19-7 with a 2.89 ERA. He finished second in the American League in ERA, strikeouts (251) and Cy Young voting.

Martinez was even more dominant in 1999, winning the pitching Triple Crown by leading the American League in wins (23-4 record), ERA (2.07) and strikeouts (313). He unanimously ran away with the Cy Young, and finished second in MVP voting. Pedro won another Cy Young the next season in 2000, leading the league with a 1.74 ERA and 284 strikeouts.

Pedro’s dominance continued throughout his last four years with the Red Sox, capped off by leading the Red Sox to their first World Series championship since 1918 in 2004.

Martinez was the best pitcher in baseball throughout his time with the Red Sox. His legendary number 45 is retired by the team, and he was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame (receiving 91% of the vote on his first ballot) as a member of the Red Sox in 2015.

Next: Number Four