A street just outside of Safeco Field in Seattle is already named after former Seattle Mariner Edgar Martinez. A restaurant down the line in leftfield is named Edgar’s Cantina.
However, now the former great with the Mariners will be given the biggest of all team honors, as the franchise will retire the No. 11 jersey he made so famous and hang it beside No. 24, the retired jersey of Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr. on the façade in center field.
Last year Griffey’s No. 24 was retired shortly after he was inducted into the Hall of Fame and now team officials decided to add the No. 11 of Martinez. The ceremony retiring his jersey will be held on August 12 prior to a game with the Los Angeles Angels.
When contacted, Martinez said for he and his family it was an incredible honor to have his jersey retired.
Kevin Mather the president of the Mariners said the team’s decision to retire No. 11 was pushed through quickly by the board of governors of the team after the jump Martinez made in the voting for the Hall of Fame last week.
The 2017 season will be the 40th for the franchise and Martinez wore the No. 11 jersey for 20 seasons and has been part of the franchise for 36 years.
For parts of four different decades – 1980s, 1990s, 2000s and 2010s, Martinez wore the uniform of the Mariners and the team said now it was time to honor him by proudly displaying it forever at Safeco Field.
Martinez will start his second season as the hitting coach for Seattle under manager Scott Servais. Spring training begins in just three weeks.
Martinez, who is 54, played his complete 18-year career in the Majors with Seattle and in 2004 retired with a career batting average of .312. He hit 309 homers and knocked in 1,261 runs.
This past week he was on 58.6% of the Hall of Fame ballots. He needs to be on 75% of the ballots and has just two years remaining before his 10-year limit on the ballot arrives.
In addition to the retiring of Griffey’s jersey, the Mariners have retired the No. 42 of Jackie Robinson, as did every other Major League club to honor the first African American to play in the majors.
Martinez said it would be an honor to have his jersey retired next to Griffey, who he called one of the greatest players ever to play baseball.