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Red Sox Sign Ramon Martinez

The Boston Red Sox signed free agent right-hander Ramon Martinez Thursday, uniting him with his brother.

Martinez, 30, the older brother of the club's ace, Pedro Martinez, reportedly agreed to a two-year deal with an option. No terms were announced.

Martinez, who played all of his 11 major-league seasons in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization, has a 123-77 career record with a 3.45 ERA. He pitched a no-hitter July 14, 1995 against the Florida Marlins.

Last season, Martinez was 7-3 before his season was cut short with shoulder surgery for a torn rotator cuff in June. He has been throwing twice a week and the Red Sox are hoping he'll join them about mid-season.

"I'm glad to be with my brother again," Martinez said. "I'd like to be here the rest of my career."

Martinez talked to Pedro, whom the Red Sox acquired in a trade from Montreal in November 1997, before joining the club. But the choice was his alone.

"We discussed this issue and we talked to each other about this decision," he said. "He said it's up to you. We're going to help each other."

"Ramon's a proven major-league pitcher," general manager Dan Duquette said. "He brings excellent leadership ability to the Red Sox and we're looking forward to him making a contribution to this year's team."

Martinez, an All-Star with the Dodgers in 1990 and '91, threw 30 pitches off a bullpen mound in front of Duquette, assistant general manager Mike Port and team physician Dr. Arthur Pappas in a workout before the signing. On his final pitch, he unloaded a hard fastball before walking off with a smile.

"It feels great. Everything's coming along very, very well," he said. "I don't have exactly the date I'll be back. I don't have any question I'll be back and I'll be back 100 percent."

"That (last pitch) was a good sign. I let one go a little, but I know I can do better."

"He's coming along on his rehab very nicely," Duquette said. "He had good life on his fastball. Good control. He had a little extra on the last one."

Martinez played with Pedro for parts of the 1992 and '93 seasons before Pedro was traded to Montreal.

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