Perez: “I’m tired of getting booed at home.”

CLEVELAND — Chris Perez turned in one of the most dominant performances of his young career as the Indians closer to seal Saturday’s 2-0 victory over the Marlins. Then, as Perez headed off the mound, he noticed something different for a change.

The fans at Progressive Field were cheering for him.

“I’m tired of getting booed at home,” Perez said. “So I figured I’d throw some strikes today. You can quote that.”

Following an overpowering 10-pitch performance against Miami, Perez had a few things to get off his chest. He complained of being booed and mocked in recent appearances at home and opined that Cleveland’s low attendance at Progressive Field is a deterrent for players who have a choice to sign with the Indians.

None of this means Perez does not give his all while pitching for the Tribe.

“I’m here. I’m here to win,” Perez said. “I’m here for my teammates and I want to bring a championship to Cleveland, to do my job and help the team win. I think I do a pretty good job of showing that on the field. I don’t think I bring any undue attention to myself. I’m out there for the team. In big wins, I get excited and I’m like a kid again, because it’s fun.”

Perez certainly had a good time on Saturday afternoon, when he sent Omar Infante, Hanley Ramirez and Gregg Dobbs back to the bench with three consecutive called strikeouts. The closer let out a shout in celebration in front of one of the larger crowds of the season. The announced attendance of 29,799 was the largest since Opening Day.

It was Opening Day on April 5 when Perez’s latest battle with the local fans began. In that game against the Blue Jays, the 26-year-old right-hander gave up three runs in two-thirds of an inning to blow his first save chance of the season. The boo birds came out during that performance, and Perez had no issue with that, given the circumstances.

“They had a right,” Perez said. “They could’ve booed me Opening Day, and they did, and I totally deserved it. That’s a different thing.”

Different than what happened on Thursday night.

Perez, who has gone 13-for-13 in save chances with a 1.72 ERA since that Opening Day debacle, entered Thursday’s 6-5 win over Seattle with the game caught in a 4-4 tie in the 10th inning. With one out, Perez allowed a single to Justin Smoak and then issued a walk to Casper Wells.

That is when fans sent a chorus of cat calls in Perez’s direction.

“They booed me against the Mariners when I had two guys on,” Perez said. “It feels like I can’t even give up a baserunner without people booing me. It’s even worse when there’s only 5,000 in the stands, because then you can hear it. It [ticks] me off.”

“I got two guys on,” he added later. “Yeah, my release point was all over the place, but really? I’ve got two guys on. They haven’t even scored yet and you’re booing me? You’re saying, ‘Get this bum off the mound.’ Come on.”

In that outing, Perez retired the next two hitters he faced to escape unscathed. After he struck out Seattle’s Jesus Montero to end the inning, Perez did not enjoy the crowd’s reaction.

“The mock standing applause just adds to it,” Perez said. “You see their true colors.”

Perez said it has been hard not to be angered by the boos at home.

“It doesn’t bother me. It [ticks] me off,” he said. “I don’t think they have a reason to boo me.”

Perez, who is under contract for $4.5 million and under club control through 2014, added that the Indians’ poor attendance did not help the situation. After Saturday’s game, Cleveland’s Major League-worst season average at home rose to 15,518 per game.

The All-Star closer went as far as to say the low attendance hurt the Tribe’s ability to add players via free agency. Perez pointed to outfielder Carlos Beltran, who signed a two-year deal worth $26 million with the Cardinals over the offseason after the receiving a similar offer from the Indians.

“Guys don’t want to come over here and people wonder why,” Perez said. “Why doesn’t Carlos Beltran want to come over here? Well, because of that. That’s part of it. It doesn’t go unnoticed — trust us. I’m not calling out the fans. It’s just how it is. … Nobody wants to play in front of 5,000 fans. We know the weather [stinks], but people see that. Other players know that.

“You had a choice of playing in St. Louis where you get 40,000 like Beltran chose to do, or you can come to Cleveland. It’s going to take more money to get him to come to Cleveland. That’s just how it is. That’s another thing that you have to go against. It’s not only the payrolls of the East teams, but that kind of stuff.”

Perez continued by saying fans should be not be surprised when players sign elsewhere.

“I completely understand,” said the pitcher. “The fans can’t take it personal when the players don’t want to stay here or players don’t want to come here. It’s a business. You didn’t choose to get drafted by Cleveland. I’m in it for my family. Who knows? I could throw my last pitch tomorrow.”

–JB

19 Comments

Dude has been lights out since Opening Day. I was at the Mariner’s game. People started on him when he first started coming out of the bullpen. Hadn’t even thrown a pitch yet. I give him credit for giving his all out there. I wouldn’t try if good or bad I was treated like the worst player ever.

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I wasn’t at that game, and I don’t boo my team when I am at games out of principle, but I have made jabs at Perez and this actually made me feel bad about it. He’s been damn good this year, and even when he has a bad game (everyone does) he deserves better.

That was a well written artcile. I enjoyed reading it quite a bit. There are so many sites on the internet these days, and so much information, it is hard to tell what is real, and what people just make up. The same goes for diets or any kind of weight loss. I have read a lot about the hcg diet, and am not sure what to determine out of everything. It seems that hcg injections are the way to go, however they seem expensive, and you need a doctor. I am wondering about hcg drops, and if they truly work. There are real hcg drops, and homeopathic hcg drops available all over. You can even get hcg drops at Walmart now. The diet that goes with hcg, seems like it is a starvation diet since they say that you eat less than 500 calories per day. I would think that people would lose weight on any diet like that. They also say that hcg helps you be able to stay on the diet, and causes your body to be able to burn more fat. Thanks, hcg.

Unfortunately, you have to deal with the uneducated fans. This doesn’t just happen here. Vernon Wells gets booed all the time in L.A., and so was Pujols, for goodness sake! He’s not the only one that endures that, and he has 4.5 million reasons to have a little thicker skin. At least we now have an indication that there wouldn’t be much chance signing a long term deal with him, so we can see him on the trading block before he hits free agency. Those words, while they may ring somewhat true, may come back to haunt him. After all, he isn’t a frontline starter, and relievers are very volatile as far as living up to long term contracts so he may not get a big long-term deal, even if his performance continues. All the same, his recent performances have been outstanding, and I believe we should respect all players of our own teams.

CLEVELAND!! So Adam’s family is from there and he’s taken me a few times to see the Browns, Cavs, and Indians play. It’s kind of a dead city, but they have the rock and roll hall of fame. That’s rlaley cool, wish I could go to Cleveland that weekend to run a race!

Just a thought…there is a set of azmniag antique English dining chairs at the Pasadena Antique Center–which is right around the corner from the Rose bowl. Happy hunting at the Rose Bowl.

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I started this diet on May 2 and as of May 11 I have lost 13 lbs. I feel no side efetfcs from the drops if anything I feel better than I have in a long time. I also have no feeling of hunger or cravings. I space the various components such as an apple, strawberries, veggie and chicken or fish at two hour intervals grazing all day long. It works for me. I have an additional 40 lbs to lose so I hope I can do this by end of June.

All I can say is that this a contending playoff team and distractions should be kept minimum, so Cleveland… NO MORE BOOING!!! But, if I was Carlos, I would also be going to St Louis, for the same money. Only because St Louis has a better World Series track record. :-(

Might you have a few more constant posts, nslvrtheeees I am positive you got more or much better material to accomplish , ; ). Could you carry on with the good develop your blog. I kinda like it! Might use some more consistent changes, yet i’m fairly confident you still have other activities things to attend to similar to we all do.

Seriously people! Chris has been rock solid! I live in West Michigan and I make a trip to Cleveland at least 5 times a year to show my support. We all need to support our players and give them reason to want to come and stay here. Money is a huge driving force in getting a player, but the feeling of having the fans support shouldn’t be ignored. Save the boos for the visiting team.

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My hat is off to your astute command over this topic-bravo!

All the comments are dead on. CP has gotten the job done. I was at that game, and I was shocked at the booing. It wasn’t pretty: his control seemed off, he only threw 7 Ks for 17 pitches, but I was watching and cheering for my team to get out of the inning and win: end of story. And I’ll be honest, as shocked as I was at hearing fans boo our player, Perez’s comments made me angry. I’m not angry at him, he called us Cleveland fans out and he’s right, I’m angry at Cleveland fans for becoming such a sorry bunch. If Perez can channel that pure rage toward a 10 pitch, 3 strikeout save, I can only hope we can channel his rage toward making Cleveland a better baseball town and showing people how to enjoy the ballgame!

The issue is that he is perceived to be one pitcher with a save on the table and a whole different pitcher when there is not. One has to wonder how he can be so lights out going for the save and so crappy when a save is not available.

I suffered opening day in person and thrilled again in person for Saturday’s 10 pitch masterpiece for which he was loudly cheered.

C’mon, he’s the same pitcher regardless…every indicator says so. We’re talking small sample sizes that cause misperceptions AND the salient fact that Chris Perez gives up runs! When you give up runs in a tie game (i.e. “non-save” situation) your team generally loses; when you give up run(s) when you have a 1-3 run lead, you don’t necessarily lose. He’s the same pitcher, get over it. The fact that this town (and the media) obsesses over this issue is the reason the anxiety and murmurs started when Chris came into that extra-inning tie game last Thursday. When he proceeded to give up a sharp single on a 3-1 count, then threw 4 straight horrible balls to Casper Wells, shoving the go-ahead run to second, then threw two more balls to John Jaso before Radinsky came to the mound….well, by that time, it was easy to hear the boos in the sparse crowd that afternoon. That Perez miraculously escaped another “non-save” situation (Jaso just missed hitting one out on a meatball 2-1 pitch) is why Chris was still frothing at the mouth after Saturday’s appearance. He didn’t care that the team just completed a win in front of the largest crowd of the season that saw one, no, he had to make the day about himself. Now we face the Tigers with this whole stupid issue hanging over the team AND Chris. How in the world can this end well? Regardless of whether anything was true or not, there was nothing constructive, productive, or helpful in his rant, for him, the team, or the situation between fans and franchise…NOTHING. Selfish and inexcusable.

HA HA HA! You\’ve got me! All I do all day is to sit around an do nonihtg while others slave away for me. In the 10 minutes I waited for data, I really should have written a grant, or cured cancer, or some shit, instead of watching YouTube. It is also completely unfair that the students in our lab are paid $2 an hour and required to work 115 hours per week while I sit and do nonihtg. It is, indeed, in poor taste that [I] sit around doing nonihtg and do nonihtg at all. Nothing, I tell you!!!That\’s my evil plan! Muaaaaaaah ha ha ha!!!!

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