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Extra Bases: Martinez set for second start

4/22/2014

OAKLAND, Calif. -- Texas Rangers rookie right-hander Nick Martinez is expected to be officially recalled from Double-A Frisco and make his second career start Tuesday night against the Oakland Athletics.

Martinez made his major league debut April 5 against Tampa Bay, allowing just three runs and four hits over six innings and getting a no-decision in a 5-4 Rangers loss. The next day, Martinez was optioned to Frisco when right-hander Yu Darvish came off the disabled list.

Martinez is filling in for injured right-hander Tanner Scheppers, who's on the 15-day disabled list with right elbow inflammation. With left-hander Matt Harrison likely nearing a return from the disabled list, Martinez could be headed back to the minors soon after Tuesday night's game.

That's not his mindset.

"I look at it as an opportunity," Martinez said Monday before the Rangers opened a three-game series with a 4-3 victory against the A's. "It is an opportunity, after all. If they think I'm that guy, who's to say I don't stay up here? If I do go back down, I'll continue to work hard and help whichever team I'm with to win."

Martinez made two starts for Frisco, going 0-0 with a 1.86 ERA.

"I tried implementing a two-seamer down in Double-A, but scratch that," Martinez said, laughing. "I scratched the two-seamer. Walking too many guys down there. I kind of got away from my game plan. Plan to get back to what I normally do, which helped me get up here in the first place."

The Rangers selected Martinez in the 18th round of the 2011 June draft out of Fordham University, and he made a quick trip to the big leagues. He learned a few valuable lessons in his first major league start.

"It's the same game," Martinez said. "Just got to execute. The same things that apply at Double-A will apply here. Obviously the mistakes you make up here are probably going to be more damaging. It's the same game. I'm going to try to pitch my game."

Two of the four hits he allowed against Tampa Bay were home runs.

"Homers happen," Martinez said. "Just mistakes. I'm sure if I make mistakes in Double-A they're going to capitalize. I didn't really read too much into the homers."