J.D. Martinez spoke to the media on Tuesday shortly after being traded to the Arizona Diamondbacks, saying he hopes to help his new team but he’ll miss the fans in Detroit.
Fox Sports Detroit has video of the interview for you to watch below:
J.D. Martinez reacts to trade. #Tigers pic.twitter.com/TgL0ApnUmp— FOX Sports Detroit (@FOXSportsDet) July 18, 2017
“You knew it was going to happen and you really don’t know how you’re going to feel,” Martinez said. “It doesn’t really hit you until they tell you. It’s definitely tough. I love this team, I love this organization. I love the fans. I love everything in Detroit. That’s home for me. They were the organization that believed in me when everyone else passed.”
Martinez said he’s not mad about the trade and that he wished the team would have gotten hot rather than be forced to make moves, saying that when the Tigers failed to win in San Diego it turned the Tigers from buyers to sellers. He said Tigers GM Al Avila is doing what he has to for the organization.
“Next year in the offseason you never know what’s going to happen in this crazy game. Maybe our paths will cross again,” Martinez said.
The Diamondbacks are in second place in the National League West currently, with a 53-39 record. They’re 10 1⁄2 games behind the Dodgers but have a six game lead in the NL Wild Card race.
Martinez said leaving will be weird.
“Once you walk in that [new] clubhouse, you’re no longer a Tiger, you’re a Diamondback now,” Martinez said. “It’s going to be weird. New clubhouse, new players. But they’ve got a great team over there. They’ve been good for a reason. I’m hoping to go over there and just hop on their train and just do what I can to help them keep doing what they’ve been doing.”
Martinez said his time in Detroit is where he grew up and where he made his name is in Detroit.
“I feel like just I learned how to handle the game in a more professional manner,” Martinez said. “I feel like in Houston when I was over there was just a young guys, didn’t have a lot of older guys to follow, look up to, really bounce ideas off of.”
“When I came here it was the opposite, I was the young guy. So I think that definitely helped me grow just the way they go about every at bat, the way they go about every pitch. Just never giving up on a pitch, never giving up on an at-bat.”