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Former Pirates Catcher Russell Martin Inducted Into Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame

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Russell Martin, Pittsburgh Pirates

Jim Leyland isn’t the only former member of the Pittsburgh Pirates receiving high honors this year.

Former Pirates catcher Russell Martin, who was born in East York, Ont., has been inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame.

“My first thought when I heard the news was man, I must be getting old,” Martin said on his induction. “My next thought was what an honour to be inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame alongside other greats. I’ve never played the game for awards and accolades, but this is pretty darn special.”

Martin spent two memorable years with the Pirates from 2013-14 as the team’s starting catcher. Combined between the two seasons, Martin slashed .256/.362/.401 with 41 doubles, 26 home runs and 122 RBIs in 238 games.

In each season Martin wore the black and gold, the Pirates made it to the postseason. Perhaps his most memorable moment while in Pittsburgh, Martin hit a pair of home runs in the 2013 National League Wild Card victory over the Cincinnati Reds. The first of those two home runs came right after Reds starter Johnny Cueto infamously dropped the ball as Cueto, Cueto, Cueto’ chants echoed throughout PNC Park.

In addition to the Pittsburgh Pirates, Martin spent time with the Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays during his 14-year career. The soon-to-be 41-year-old appeared in 1,693 games during his big-league career and slashed .248/.349/.397 with 1,416 hits, 191 home runs, 771 RBIs and 101 stolen bases.

While Martin was a solid contributor on offense, he was even better behind the plate. A 2007 Gold Glove recipient, Martin accumulated 120 defensive runs saved in his career and caught 30% of attempted base stealers, including a league-leading 44% while with the Blue Jays in 2014.

Martin was named an All-Star four times in his career, won a Silver Slugger and received MVP consideration each year from 2013-15.

Martin is joined by Jimmy Key, Ashley Stephenson, Rod Heisler, Paul Godfrey and Howard Birnie in the class of 2024.

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