Martínez was a focal point of the 1999 playoffs against the Cleveland Indians . Starting the series opener, he was forced out of the game after 4 shutout innings due to a strained back with the Red Sox up 2–0. The Red Sox , however, lost the game 3–2. Boston won the next two games to tie the series, but Martínez was still too injured to start the fifth and final game. However, neither team's starters were effective, and the game became a slugfest, tied at 8–8 at the end of 3 innings. Martínez entered the game as an emergency relief option. Unexpectedly, Martínez neutralized the Cleveland lineup with six no-hit innings for the win. He struck out eight and walked three, despite not being able to throw either his fastball or changeup with any command. Relying totally on his curve, Martínez and the Red Sox won the deciding game 12–8.
Now Truong continues the tale with Saigon Calling: London 1963-75 (originally published in French in 2015), which follows the experiences of his family after they seek refuge in Europe. It offers a poignant illustration of what life was like for a family of refugees from the war, and from the perspective of young children (granted, Truong's family were a privileged and upper class set of refugees, well-connected with South Vietnamese and European elites). While relatives and friends struggle to survive amid the bombs and street warfare of Vietnam, the displaced narrator and his siblings find their attention consumed by the latest fashion and music trends in London. The book offers a poignant and jarring reminder not just of the resilience of the human spirit, but also of its ability to seek solace in the materiality of one's present.
Supporting the lineup is a starting rotation that, while not full of proven commodities, does offer as much potential as any group in the league. The crown jewel of the rotation is 28-year-old Danny Duffy. Duffy recently became a starter full-time, and he responded with a 12-3 season in 2016. His ERA and 188 strikeouts last year show what he is capable of moving forward, and many believe there could even be an AL Cy Young Award in his future. Ian Kennedy is another solid arm for Kansas City. He was 11-11 with a ERA last year, and he has only improved since working with the Royals’ pitching coaches. It’d also be a crime not to mention that Kansas City has long had one of the best bullpens in baseball. When the starters can pitch six or seven innings and come away with the lead, it’s a safe bet that Joakim Soria and Kelvin Herrera will take care of business.