Ruy Martinez is a tough little guy. He has no other choice. The scrappy 13 year old is 4′-8″ tall and weighs only 80 pounds. Maybe that explains why he’s clutched up on a big stage at the Little League World Series. Why be scared when you’re having so much fun?
Ruy plays second base for Team Mexico, the national champions from Guadalupe, Nuevo Leon. And he’s led the squad with some inspired play that has his country in the semi-finals in the international bracket. Actually, Ruy is a quiet, unassuming kid by nature, at least until he gets on the baseball diamond. Then, he has a mind of his own and is all business.
When players from all the teams received free cleats with neon green trim, courtesy of Easton, Martinez decided to stick with his own red-colored footwear. After all, they blended in better with his uniform, and those were his lucky shoes! And he’s not intimidated by anyone. When Ruy was flattened during an accidental collision with an umpire in a game against Japan, he climbed to his feet like a boxer beating the 10 count, cleared the cobwebs and was good to go.
Ruy Martinez has those soft Mexican hands on defense and can fly on the base path. The best part of this teenager’s game, though, is his bat. Ruy just flat out rakes, which has captured the attention of Chicago White Sox outfielder Adam Eaton, one of his many fans. He tweeted this after Martinez went yard during Mexico’s win against Australia:
— Adam Eaton (@AdamSpankyEaton) August 18, 2014
Martinez also collected three hits and three RBI’s in his team’s upset win over Venezuela, and has compiled a tournament slash line of .545/.583/.909. There’s something about the makeup of this youngster that just oozes confidence. It doesn’t matter whether he scorches a line at the plate or flashes the leather like Jose Altuve, the pint-sized super star of the Houston Astros. Ruy just turns to the cameras, shrugs his shoulders and produces a winning smile. He’s driving the young girls of Williamsport crazy, despite the fact that his English is a work in progress.
Just a slight height difference between these two Little League World Series players…6'4" Erick Figueroa is 13! pic.twitter.com/pjm1Gioxjt
— SportsNation (@SportsNation) August 18, 2014
A photo that went viral on social media shows Martinez standing next to Puerto Rico’s Erick Figueroa, who at 6′-4″ is the tallest player at the internationally televised event. It was good for a few laughs. But Ruy has proved that in baseball, size doesn’t always matter, and good things can often come in a small package.
This kid has definitely caught my attention, and it won’t be long before scouts will be taking notice as well.