Perez's Pen Debut Is 'Wild Thing'
Eric Wedge is about to be ejected by Tom Hallion.
Eric Wedge is about to be ejected by Tom Hallion.
Indians Ink
Posted Jun 30, 2009


No matter where Indians general manager Mark Shapiro looks for bullpen help, all he seems to find is disaster. Newly acquired reliever Chris Perez fit right into the bullpen of bumpkins in his Cleveland debut. He hit the first two Chicago White Sox batters he faced, walked the bases loaded and gave up four runs in the ninth inning on a fielder's choice, RBI double, wild pitch and an RBI single.

That's not exactly what Shapiro had in mind when he traded veteran infielder-outfielder Mark DeRosa to the St. Louis Cardinals on Saturday night for Perez and a player to be named.

Then again, season-long meltdowns from $20.5 million free agent Kerry Wood along with holdovers Rafael Perez, Jensen Lewis and so many others were not in the preseason script, either.

The 6-3 loss to the White Sox on Monday night was Cleveland's 11th in 13 games and drove the Indians deeper into last place in the AL Central.

Perez's performance made Ricky Vaughn look like he had pinpoint control instead of being the fireballing but wildly scary reliever in the movie "Major League".

Chris PerezPerez turned a 2-0 deficit into a 6-0 White Sox lead. He started it all be hitting Alexei Ramirez in the head with a pitch. The scary sound of the ball bouncing off Ramirez's batting helmet reverberated through the ballpark, which became eerily quiet as the shortstop dropped to the ground.

Ramirez got up after being treated by a White Sox trainer and walked off the field.

After pinch-runner Jayson Nix stole second, Perez hit Jermaine Dye, too.

The 6-foot-4 right-hander then walked Jim Thome. He was registering in the 90s on the radar gun, but not coming close to the strike zone.

One run scored on a fielder's choice grounder by A.J. Pierzynski, then Chris Getz doubled a run, Perez uncorked a run-scoring wild pitch, and yielded an RBI single to Gordon Beckham before being replaced by Jose Veras.

White Sox starter Gavin Floyd was in complete control, allowing only five singles over 7 2-3 scoreless innings.

Tribe starter Carl Pavano (6-7) gave up RBI singles to Dye and Beckham in the first and second innings, respectively. The right-hander allowed five hits and no walks, striking out six through seven innings.

Tony Sipp worked a scoreless eighth, before Perez came apart in the ninth.

The Indians avoided a shutout in the ninth when Shin-Soo Choo hit his 10th homer off Matt Thornton and Ryan Garko connected for a two-run shot, his eighth, off Octavio Dotel.

Indians manager Eric Wedge was ejected in the seventh inning for arguing.

With the bases loaded, Garko then hit a tapper towards first base that Floyd picked up before it crossed the foul line and threw to first for the apparent third out.

Plate umpire Scott Barry called it a foul ball and Chicago manager Ozzie Guillen came out to complain. The umpires met for several momentsm then ruled Garko out. Wedge bolted from the Tribe dugout and was quickly tossed by crew chief Tom Hallion.

"They're supposed to huddle if they've got a question about it," Wedge, still upset, told reporters after the game. "I thought the home plate umpire did his job. He had a good view of it, made the call and they reversed it. They shouldn't have reversed it. Bases loaded, 2-0 game, seventh inning ... ridiculous."



Related Stories
DeRosa Dealt To Cardinals
 -by IndiansInk.net  Jun 27, 2009
Cardinals Acquire Mark DeRosa from Cleveland
 -by TheCardinalNation.com  Jun 27, 2009
Perez & Boggs Back to Bigs; P.J. to Follow
 -by TheCardinalNation.com  Apr 15, 2009

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