Analysis

Why Russell Martin is the Pirates’ Early Postseason MVP

Why Russell Martin is the Pirates’ Early Postseason MVP

Russell Martin has made a huge October impact at the plate -- both catching and hitting. (Photo Credit: David Hague)

Russell Martin has made only one egregious mistake this postseason, and it wasn't even on the field. His cell phone went off in the press conference.

"Phone rings. Nice. Awesome," Martin joked as the noise interrupted his first answer.

It was a rookie mistake from the Pirates player with the most playoff experience (37 games). It also ends our list of complaints about Martin's October performance.

He drove in two important runs in NLDS Game 3, one to give the Pirates a 6th-inning lead and another to supply them insurance in the Bottom 8th, a final run that put the Bucs up 5-3.

"The confidence level [of this team] is high," Martin said. "And the stakes couldn't be any higher."

Martin is now for 5-for-13 and tied for a playoff-high 6 RBI. He has also caught every October inning for a pitching staff that has held strong offenses of Cincinnati and St. Louis...

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Analysis

James covers the Pirates beat for Pirates Prospects. He is a Broadcast Journalism student at USC and has written for such outlets as NBCOlympics.com, Pittsburgh Magazine and the official websites of the Los Angeles Clippers and Pittsburgh Penguins. James previously covered the Pirates for Pittsburgh Sports Report. He also broadcasts play-by-play for the USC Trojans baseball team and was awarded the 2013 Chick Hearn Memorial Scholarship and Allan Malamud Scholarship. James dispenses puns at his Twitter account (@JamesSantelli) where he promises to write in first-person. Google

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