HOUSTON, TEXAS / SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA • The Houston Astros and San Diego Padres closed the deal on one of the biggest trades in baseball history on this date in 1994. Twelve players, 6 from each team, switched uniforms.
Among the big names involved, the Padres got third-baseman Ken Caminiti and outfielder Steve Finley. The Astros got outfielder Derek Bell and a young pitcher by the name of Pedro Martinez. More in a moment.
Unfortunately for Houston, the promising young Pedro Martinez they got from San Diego was Pedro A. Martinez, not Pedro J. Martinez.
The Padres got the better part of the deal. Caminiti had some solid years with the Astros, but his best years were in San Diego. The same for Steve Finley. His best years were after he left Houston.
The Astros got several productive years out of Derek Bell after getting him from San Diego. Unfortunately for Houston, the promising young Pedro Martinez they got from San Diego was Pedro A. Martinez, not Pedro J. Martinez.
Pedro J. is the Pedro Martinez who went on to win 219 games, 3 Cy Young awards, appear in 2 World Series, winning 1, and make 8 All-star teams.
The Pedro Martinez Houston got from San Diego on this date in 1994 didn’t win or save a single game for the Astros. He retired in 1998 at the age of 28.
From Houston to San Diego
From San Diego to Houston
Pedro A. Martinez
The New York Times, December 29, 1994, by Murray Chase
9 biggest baseball trades