SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- A special visitor dressed in red is flying in to town to bring joy to true believers. Not Santa. It's Pedro Martinez.

The Portland Sea Dogs announced on Wednesday that Martinez will be the featured guest at the team's annual Hot Stove Dinner. The event builds excitement for the upcoming season while raising money for the Maine Children's Cancer Program. It will be held January 17 at the Sable Oaks Marriott in South Portland. Two hours after tickets to the dinner went on sale, all 500 were sold out.

Martinez's accomplishments over his seven years with the Red Sox made him a legend across New England. He holds the team record for highest winning percentage (.760), and ranks third in strikeouts (1,683), sixth in wins (117) and seventh in ERA (2.52). His leadership of the pitching staff reached its peak with a World Series title in 2004, breaking an 86-year championship drought for the Red Sox.

Boston Red Sox pitcher Pedro Martinez throws a pitch to Florida Marlins' rightfielder Mark Kotsay during the 4th inning of a game at Pro Player Stadium in Miami on June 26, 1998

Martinez played with two other teams in the later years of his career, but his bond to the Red Sox was renewed after retirement. The team inducted him into its hall of fame in 2014 and retired his number 45 the following year. Martinez remains on the team payroll as Special Assistant to the President of Baseball Operations.