Despite winning five of their last six games and sporting a record that currently places them in a rather comfortable first-place in the AL Central, Cleveland Indians closer Chris Perez apparently felt the need to criticize his own fans after Saturday's win.
Perez, who struck out the side to record his 13th save of the season in the ninth, was not too pleased with hearing boos from his own fans over the last few days according to The Chronicle-Telegram's Chris Assenheimer. Perez let loose in the clubhouse after the game to air his grievances.
Perez rips fans for not showing up and for booing him during his last outing two days ago against Mariners.— Chris Assenheimer (@CAwesomeheimer) May 19, 2012
Perez says one of the reasons free agents don't want to sign with Cleveland is because of lack of fan support.— Chris Assenheimer (@CAwesomeheimer) May 19, 2012
Perez cited Beltran choosing to sign with Cards as an example of players not wanting to come to Cleveland. Said it definitely is a factor— Chris Assenheimer (@CAwesomeheimer) May 19, 2012
There might be a logical time to stir the pot as a professional athlete, but doing it because of a few isolated boos and predictably-low attendance, after 40 games no less, seems like a terrible decision. Everything is clicking right now for the Indians on the field, so there's no need for Perez to cause a distraction off it by throwing his fan base under the bus.
The timing of this outburst literally makes no sense, especially because Perez himself has been 13-for-13 on save chances since blowing his first attempt on opening day. That's not to say some of his concerns don't have at least the slight bit of merit, but there's no logical reason to spout off about this when your team is playing some of the best ball in the league. And yet, Perez did it anyway. Be sure to keep an eye on how Cleveland fans respond to Perez next time he takes the hill.