‘Japanese save king’ Cuban streaks to 30 straight games with zero ERA…second longest in Junichi history

Cuban Raidel Martinez, 27, of the Junichi Dragons of Nippon Professional Baseball, has extended his streak to 30 consecutive games with a zero earned run average.

Martinez pitched a scoreless ninth inning in a 4-2 win over the Yakult Swallows at Jingu Stadium in Japan on Wednesday to earn the save.

He made quick work of the game with six pitches. He got the first batter, Murakami, to ground out to the pitcher on a splitter. He then got the next batter to ground out to shortstop on a splitter to get the second out on two pitches.

Two batters later, he got pinch-hitter Aoki to ground out to second base on four pitches on a 1-ball-2-strike count to end the game and preserve the win.

Martinez, who has been with Junichi since 2018, won the Central League saves title last year after posting a 4-3 record with 39 saves and a 0.97 ERA in 56 appearances.

This season, he has appeared in 30 games, posting a 1-1 record with 21 saves, five shutouts and a 0.00 ERA. He leads the league in saves. His one loss came on May 3 against Hanshin, when he allowed a bases-loaded single with one out and a fielding error that led to an unearned run.

Martinez recorded his 20th save of the season on May 11 against Yakult when he worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the ninth inning. It was his fourth straight 20-save season, dating back to the 2020 season when he took over as closer.온라인카지노

Martinez is only the second player to reach 20 saves in four consecutive years, joining Iwase (11), who holds the franchise record for saves (407).

At 6-foot-3, Martinez is a fireballer. His fastball tops out at 161 mph. The slider and splitter he threw against Aoki touched 148 mph.

Martinez represented Cuba in the World Baseball Classic in March, helping the team reach the quarterfinals. In three games, he went 1-0 with one save and a 4.50 ERA.