| Home

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Ex-Yankees catcher Martin, Bucs reach deal

Pirates/MLB Videos

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.
New York Yankees' Russell Martin pumps his fist as he leaves the field after celebrating his solo home run off Oakland Athletics relief pitcher Sean Doolittle that gave the Yankees a 2-1 win, in the 10th inning of a baseball game Friday, Sept. 21, 2012, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Kmonicek)

Pirates podcasts

  • Loading...
Thursday, Nov. 29, 2012, 9:14 p.m.

Capping three days of intense negotiations, the Pirates and free-agent catcher Russell Martin on Thursday agreed to a two-year, $17 million contract, sources told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

It is the most expensive free agent signing in franchise history.

Martin will be in Pittsburgh on Friday to take a physical and finalize the deal, which is expected to be announced in the afternoon.

Martin, 29, spent the past two seasons with the New York Yankees. He made $7.5 million last season and batted .211 with 21 home runs, 53 RBI and a .713 OPS.

With only one experienced catcher — backup Michael McKenry — on their 40-man roster, the Pirates made Martin their top offseason target. They considered going after Mike Napoli but decided he was no longer able to handle the rigors of being a full-time catcher and was better suited for the American League.

Martin gives the Pirates an instant and significant upgrade defensively. He threw out 24 percent (20 of 83) of would-be base-stealers last season. Rod Barajas, the Pirates' starter last season, threw out just 6 percent of base-stealers.

Rob Biertempfel is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at or 412-320-7811.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.




Show commenting policy

Most-Read Stories

  1. Focused on defense, Pirates start Rodriguez at first base for wild-card game
  2. House defeats governor’s tax plan
  3. McKeesport-based Internet radio station WMCK.FM touted as ‘college radio without the college’
  4. Former employee at Plum home-building firm charged with embezzling nearly $200K
  5. WPIAL hands out suspensions for Wilkinsburg-Monessen fight
  6. Steelers QB Roethlisberger not targeting Oct. 25 return
  7. Penguins make moves in advance of roster deadline
  8. Sky’s not the limit: Pirate Parrot takes trip into Earth’s atmosphere
  9. Rossi: Time for Pirates to take next step
  10. New Florence assistant fire chief charged with having sex with juvenile
  11. Cubs’ Arrieta, Pirates’ Cole leave batters with little margin for error