I feel like I’ve written this same post before. Oliver Perez is the kind of pitcher that will give you a decent start or two and then blow up like he did yesterday. Can we just say that we’ve learned that by now? As Denny Green would say “He is what we thought he was”.
There are some viable alternatives to Perez. R.A. Dickey is pitching really well in Buffalo and Hisanori Takahashi has done much better than expected as the long man. But that’s not the problem.
The problem is what to do with Perez if he isn’t in the rotation. He can’t come out of the bullpen if he can’t throw strikes. That just won’t work. The Mets could come up with some “injury” that Perez has like they did last season. Perez got rocked by the Braves on Aug. 18 for 4 ER in 5 IP. Then he completely imploded against the Phillies for 6 ER over 0.2 IP on Aug. 23. That was the last we saw of Perez in 2009 because of a convenient knee injury.
At $12 million per year there really aren’t many options. The Mets can’t just cut him loose yet. At the earliest, they could cut him before next season. But they would have to eat another $12 million that they owe him next year. It’s a tough spot for the Mets.
Jerry Manuel was asked by reporters after the game if they planned on removing Perez from the rotation. His response was:
Those are some things that we’ll have to reflect on. We have to take everything into consideration as we contemplate and chew on it, marinate on it and see where we are. We will have to talk about it, reflect on it. But as I sit here right now, I don’t see us at this time making any changes.
Here’s what Oliver Perez had to say about his start yesterday. It feels like I’ve heard him say this before too.