Cleveland Indians Place Roberto Perez on the Injured List

Roberto Perez
CLEVELAND, OHIO - JULY 17: Catcher Roberto Perez #55 of the Cleveland Indians watches the scoreboard after the top of the third inning of an intrasquad game at Progressive Field on July 17, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

Wednesday, the Cleveland Indians officially placed catcher Roberto Perez on the injured list. Zack Meisel, who covers the Indians for The Athletic, was the first to report the news.

Perez’s injury is a right shoulder strain. Mandy Bell the Indians beat writer through MLB.com followed up with more information from skipper Terry Francona.

The loss of Roberto Perez is a significant one for the Indians. Perez has quietly established himself as one of the better catchers in baseball. Furthermore, he has been a very valuable asset for the Indians pitching staff. If you recall, the Indians starting rotation itself posted a 2.32 ERA over the first five games of this season. In that span, they allowed 25 hits along with three walks, while recording 43 strikeouts.

Roberto Perez – An Elite Defender

Based on FanGraph metrics from last season, Perez recorded the most Defensive Runs Saved (30) among qualifying catchers. He ranked higher than J.T. Realmuto of the Philadelphia Phillies in that category! In addition, Perez thrived throwing runners out on the base paths. Over 118 games last season, Perez had a Caught Stealing Percentage of 41% compared to the league average of 27%.

Given those superb metrics, it is a big reason why the 31-year old catcher won the first Gold Glove Award of his seven-year big league career last year. In addition, Perez really came around at the plate in 2019.

Over the span of 449 plate appearances, he hit .239/.321/.452. In that sample, he had 93 hits, nine doubles, one triple, 24 home runs, 63 RBI, 45 walks, and 127 strikeouts. Furthermore, he had an Isolated Power value of .213 and a .285 Batting Average on Balls In Play (BABIP).

Final Thoughts

Although the Cleveland Indians have several quality players on their big league roster, Roberto Perez is a valuable asset for the team. From both the defensive and offensive perspective, he will be missed while recovering from this injury. In the best-case scenario possible, Perez will recover quickly and get back into big league action sooner than later. However, as with any injury, it takes time for players to recover and that could be the case here.

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