Chris Perez is the Cleveland Indians Closer. Chris Perez has been their Closer for almost as long as Detroit’s Jose Valverde has been a Closer for the Tigers. Like Jose Valverde, Chris Perez is quite the character.
Made known by Jason Beck, Tigers Beat Reporter for MLB.com, a reporter apparently asked Perez after Thursday’s Cleveland win whether this sweep should get the Indians more national attention.
My first thought when I read that was: ‘That reporter knows how to get a quote.’ My second thought when I read that was: ‘That reporter didn’t really try to hard. It’s Chris Perez we’re talking about.’
This is what Cleveland’s cavalier closing man quipped:
“I hope so. I don’t think we care. We’re not like flipping on ESPN to see if we’re leading off SportsCenter. We don’t care. They do their thing. They cover the Yankees and the Red Sox and how bad the Angels are. We’re doing our own thing. They’ll eventually turn. I saw a couple articles. We’re starting to get some love. It’s just we don’t have the star power. You look over there and you’ve got Cabrera and Fielder and Verlander and Valverde. But that doesn’t win baseball games. Good teams win baseball games.“
I think it’s rather cute to call the Tigers out when they’re down. Everyone is doing it. It’s fun!
But to suggest the Tigers aren’t a good team is pure horse manure. I will be brutally honest about the Tigers when they deserve it. I’m about to call them out in an ESPN article that will be going up on the SweetSpot Blog later tonight. But you can’t call the Tigers overrated or a bad team anymore than you call the Indians a good team.
Remember last year? Last year on May 25th the Indians were five and a half games in front of anyone else in the Central, at 30-17 (they’re 26-18 right now). They finished 80-82. The Tigers won the division by 15 full games.
Do we know what’s going to happen? Of course not. But when 39-year-old Derek Lowe and Jeanmar Gomez (he of 28 career starts) are leading your starting pitchers in ERA at this point, I would wait before calling the Tigers a bad team.