I’m all for getting annoyed when Rage comes in and melts down spectacularly. But yesterday felt like something different; like it wasn’t just about displeasure with a bad outing.

Give it a rest, people. This isn’t Manny Acta’s watch anymore.

Yes, Chris Perez opened his mouth more often than he probably should have. Yes, it would’ve been nice to have a PR guy at his side at all times to zip his lips shut before whatever potentially ridiculous comments that he has formulated in his mind had a chance to spill out onto the papers, cameras and blogosphere.

Unfortunately, the disappointing part of the fuller houses that have been a point of contention lately made an unwanted appearance. The residual bitterness stemming from Perez’ tirades last year cascaded down from above immediately after giving up consecutive solo shots (there’s the comeuppance that he and the Indians were due because of Review-gate) that spoiled another superb outing by Zach McAllister. Perez ended up with the win anyway on Mark Reynold’s game-winning fielder’s-choice.

But if there’s one thing that Perez should possibly know by now is that Cleveland fans have long memories. We remember his chiding. So if he blows up on a healthy-sized crowd, he’s going to get an earful that would rattle the brain.

It’s unfair. Borderline stupid. And it needs to end. Save that crap for LeBron.

For one thing, he’s not Lee Smith or Mariano Rivera. He’s not even Eric Gagne, with his sham 84 straight conversions. He’s a mortal closer; the kind in which stat-heads like to use to deride the validity of. We haven’t had a shut-down closer since Jose Mesa, and he had a hand in blowing the biggest win in our lifetimes against the Marlins. And he doesn’t get anywhere near the grief that Perez seems to get (Mesa’s beef with Omar Vizquel notwithstanding). Should Perez’ mouth really that much of a sticking point?

He’s going to give up a couple here and there. Most closers do. But I’d trust him more than anyone else in the spot right now; even more than Vinny Pestano or Cody Allen, who seems to be fast-tracked to being the closer of the future. But the key word is “future.” Not right now.

If holding comments over his head from last year (and Chris was more correct than we’d like to admit) is the majority of the reason for booing him, then some people need to just stay home. Apologies to the attendance crusaders.

Otherwise, let’s wait until he hits a clear rough spot before we give him a full-throttle piece of our minds.

11 Comments

  • aaron says:

    I would be interested in knowing what perez’s whip is. For me personally, it isn’t the blown saves, but the struggle that is every appearance he makes. He very rarely has a clean 1-2-3 inning.

    • medfest says:

      Perez’ lifetime WHIP is 1.177 and this season it is 1.133 so far.

    • The Doctor says:

      this. this is my problem with perez. it’s almost like he’s incapable of securing the save unless he allows at least 1 baserunner first.

      • Drew says:

        Exactly. A WHIP over 1.000 would indicate that he allows at least 1 base-runner in each inning he pitches.

        • medfest says:

          Mariano Rivera’s lifetime WHIP is .997 so he is also allowing a base runner an inning,well almost.

  • Patrick Sands says:

    I agree with Chris…Beggars can’t be choosers. We have made the postseason once since 2001. It’s one thing if you are the Yankees and Red Sox who are used to going to the playoffs almost every year and break the bank on players to boo them when they struggle but we are currently first place. It does seem embarrassing to boo probably the best bullpen pitcher we have had for the past 3 years who is currently giving you a first place product

  • Willyboy says:

    The moral of the story is to keep your mouth shut. Fans shouldn’t boo their own team’s players and players should never insult the fans. Perez started a “meeting of the mindless” with his comments and this mutual combat will probably dog him until he pitches a few 1-2-3 innings, tips his hat as he walks off the mound to the cheers and then keeps his mouth shut.

  • aaron says:

    I don’t know how much perez has to do with the winning ways right now. To me, he gets lots of easy save opportunities (1 inning or less w a 2 run lead or more) and it doesn’t appear to me that there is a lot of trust in him from francona.

  • Homer Simpson says:

    Would you rather have Joe Borowski back?

  • Sean Porter says:

    First – what EXACTLY did Perez ever say last year that wasn’t true?

    Second – people are really complaining about a 1.17 career WHIP? Really?

  • Jordan Wilhite says:

    Friends, Let us be real with what we are watching with Perez:

    He is a dynamite talent who has the stuff to close games when he isn’t neck deep up his own hiney (sp? screw it)

    That being said, I agree with the frustration of watching him pitch into situations that shouldn’t be happening. But a closer is supposed to come into pitch one inning every single game and end it. Rough spots will occur.

    So what’s the point of my comment? you may be wondering.

    Let’s save the anger for when (sic: If) he blows the playoff series clincher like Mesa did. In my mind, that man should be banned from Cleveland (also, life).

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