Tom Martinez, who was Tom Brady’s quarterback coach since he was 13, died yesterday, the San Jose Mercury News reported. It was his 66th birthday. Martinez announced in June he was given just weeks to live because of complications from diabetes. He was waiting for a kidney transplant. Martinez coached hundreds of athletes at the College of San Mateo in California, and always told his athletes the same thing that kept him going day after day: “I always preached as a coach that you never quit, that you battle to the end.’’ Last night, Brady’s father Tom told Comcast Sports Net New England, “It’s a big loss but he’s been very, very, very sick. I’ve known him for 50 years. He was a terrific coach and terrific mentor to a lot of people.’’ . . . Brady Quinn apologized to Tim Tebow for unflattering comments Quinn made about the Denver Broncos’ starting quarterback in a GQ article. Quinn was quoted as saying, “We’ve had a lot of, I guess, luck, to put it simply.’’ He also said he felt the fans were the reason Tebow leapfrogged him on the depth chart when supplanting Kyle Orton as the starter after a 1-4 start. Quinn tweeted that the comments attributed to him did not reflect his opinion of Tebow . . . Defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins agreed to restructure his $25 million, five-year contract with Philadelphia . . . Boston College coach Frank Spaziani said senior running back Montel Harris will not participate in spring practice because he aggravated a left knee injury that sidelined him for much of last season. Harris cited soreness after participating in the first practice of the spring season Saturday.
Off the top: Mariners to bat Ichiro third
Baseball For the first time in his 12-year career, Ichiro Suzuki won’t start the season at the top of Seattle’s batting order. Manager Eric Wedge announced yesterday he will move Ichiro from his traditional leadoff spot to No. 3 in the Mariners batting order, a move meant to be permanent. “I’ve done a lot of thinking about it this winter.’’ Wedge said. Suzuki is coming off the worst year of his career in the United States, hitting .272, the first time he’s failed to hit at least .300. Suzuki’s 184 hits were also a career low. The first option to replace Suzuki will be Chone Figgins, although Wedge said he’s not set on his Nos. 1 and 2 . . . Outfielder Raul Ibanez and the Yankees finalized a $1.1 million, one-year contract. The Yankees also reached a preliminary agreement on a $900,000, one-year contract with backup infielder Eric Chavez, pending a physical . . . Atlanta pitcher Tommy Hanson was diagnosed with a mild concussion after being in a one-car accident on his way to spring training Monday . . . Miami reliever Juan Carlos Oviedo remains in the Dominican Republic, his travel restricted after he played under the fake name Leo Nunez for seven major league seasons . . . Hard-throwing lefty Aroldis Chapman will be tested as a starter this spring by Cincinnati . . . Infielder Cristian Guzman said he will sign a minor league contract with Cleveland . . . The rules committee made minor changes for this season, including “prohibiting a manager from sending his current pitcher out to warm up with no intention of having him pitch because a relief pitcher is not ready to enter the game.’’
Red Wings lose Datsyuk, make trade
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Hockey Detroit’s leading scorer Pavel Datsyuk is expected to miss two weeks after having arthroscopic surgery to remove fragments from his right knee . . . The Tampa Bay Lightning acquired a first-round pick in the 2012 draft and minor league defenseman Sebastien Piche in a three-team trade that also involved Colorado and Detroit. Tampa Bay sent forward Steve Downie to the Avalanche for defenseman Kyle Quincey. The Lightning then dealt Quincey to the Red Wings for a first-round pick and Piche . . . Tampa Bay captain Vincent Lecavalier will be sidelined indefinitely because of broken right hand.
Lin-led Knicks set TV ratings on MSG
Miscellany The Jeremy Lin-led New York Knicks said their past two games (losses to New Orleans and New Jersey) were the highest-rated regular-season events on MSG since the network began tracking household ratings in the 1988-89 season, watched in more than 540,000 households and drawing ratings above 7.3 . . . New Jersey Nets forward Shawne Williams will undergo surgery today to remove a bone fragment from his left foot . . . Auburn women’s basketball coach Nell Fortner will resign after this season, her 28th spent coaching . . . The Fiesta Bowl’s former top executive pleaded guilty to a felony charge to settle allegations stemming from a political donations scandal. John Junker entered the plea in Phoenix for his role in soliciting political contributions from Fiesta Bowl employees. The bowl later reimbursed employees for about $48,000 over a nine-year period . . . Julia Mancuso of the US and Alexis Pinturault of France dominated the parallel slalom World Cup races on a giant ramp in Moscow. Overall World Cup leader Lindsey Vonn, who lost to Mancuso in the semifinals, finished third . . . Former racecar driver Jeremy Mayfield said the new criminal charges against him are “baseless’’ and suggests he is the target of a conspiracy involving NASCAR and law enforcement officials. Indictments by a North Carolina grand jury released Monday charged Mayfield with three counts of possessing property stolen from businesses, and a fourth charge of obtaining property by false pretense . . . Striker Kris Boyd, the Scottish Premier League’s all-time leading scorer, joined Major League Soccer’s Portland Timbers.