All-Star catcher Russell Martin discusses his early success in the big leagues, the possibility of playing in his first Midsummer Classic, and catching a pitching staff as diverse as the Dodgers' in the latest Players Talk show.
The East York, Ontario, native is emerging as a star in his second Major League season, having hit nine home runs, driven in 55 runs, and stolen 16 bases while hitting at a .306 clip. Martin's breakout season has earned him attention throughout the country, as he was elected as the National League's starting catcher in the 2007 All-Star game in San Francisco.
Martin attributes his success to hard work and the tutelage of his veteran Dodgers teammates.
"I take pride in every facet of the game, so anything I can pick up, it's really helpful," said Martin. "I can learn from Juan Pierre or Rafael Furcal about running the bases and talk to Jeff Kent or Nomar Garciaparra about hitting and their approach. I'm like a sponge -- I try to take in as much as I can. At the end of the day, it just makes me a better ballplayer."
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.