Trailing the Kansas City Royals 11-4 with two outs and the bases loaded in the ninth inning on Monday, the 26-year-old launched his second career grand slam to close the gap to three, but Detroit dropped an 11-8 decision to the resurgent Royals in the Motor City. Martinez's last slam came as a member of the Houston Astros against the San Francisco Giants on June 14, 2012. His four RBI tied a career best for the fourth time, with the last occurrence also coming on June 14, 2012 at AT&T Park. On Tuesday, the Miami native set a season high with three hits, including a double and a run scored, but the Tigers lost, 11-4, at Comerica Park. On Wednesday, the Nova Southeastern University (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) product went 2-for-4 with a solo homer in a 2-1 loss to the Royals. The back-to-back multi-hit games were a first for J.D. this season. On Thursday, Martinez blasted a fourth-inning solo homer to put Detroit up 2-1 in what proved to be the difference in the game as the Tigers triumphed over the Royals to win the final tilt of the four-game series. Moving on to Cleveland, the 20th round pick in the 2009 Draft (by Houston) went 3-for-4 with a double and a three-run homer to lead Detroit to a 6-4 win over their A.L. Central rivals at Progressive Field. His eighth-inning round tripper was his seventh of the season, coming in his 36th game to tie his 2013 mark in 50 fewer games (7 HR in 86 G last season). Martinez also set a new career high by homering in three consecutive games. He joins teammate Torii Hunter as the only Tigers to do so this season. On Sunday, the four-year veteran notched a two-run double and scored a run as the Tigers topped the Tribe, 10-4, to sweep the three-game weekend series. The double extended a career-long hitting streak to 12 games, in which Martinez has batted .404 (19-for-47) with six doubles, four homers, 13 RBI and seven runs scored over the string.
Other noteworthy performances last week included Jose Altuve (.542, 13 H, 2 2B, 3 RBI, .593 OBP) of the Houston Astros; Edwin Encarnacion (.304, 4 HR, 9 RBI) of the Toronto Blue Jays; Brad Miller (.458, 2 HR, 3 RBI) and Roenis Elias (2-0, 1.32 ERA, 13.2 IP, 2 BB, 11 SO) of the Seattle Mariners; Rubby De La Rosa (1-0, 0.64 ERA, 10 SO) of the Boston Red Sox; and Matt Shoemaker (2-0, 1.72 ERA, 15.2 IP, 3 BB, 16 SO) of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
In recognition of his American League Player of the Week Award, J.D. Martinez will be awarded a watch courtesy of Game Time, the leader in licensed sports watches, available at MLB.com.