Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Perez Delivers His Message

CLEVELAND, OH - Rafeal Perez, left-handed relief pitcher for the Cleveland Indians, had enough of the recent treatment he had been receiving. It finally boiled over Thursday, August 14 against the Baltimore Orioles. While in the club house preparing for that night's game, even with Jensen Lewis jamming on Guitar Hero with the volume way up, Perez overheard an interview between indians.com reporter, Andrew Gribble and Tribe pitching coach Carl Willis. He heard Willis' mentioning of how they were keeping an eye on Masa Kobayashi because he has already pitched more innings this year then all of last year in Japan.

This left Perez thinking, I guest that is the difference between making $3 million a year and the league minimum. When the team has a lot invested in you, they worried about your physical condition. When you're making $400K a year, they're willing to pitch you two innings a night, every night, until your arm falls off. Perez may be referring to fact that he had already pitched 61 innings this year coming into Thursday's game, compared to 60.2 all of last year with a month and a half left in the season.

Perez entered Thursday game determined to take things into his own hands, he figured if he gave up some runs, it would lessen his use in future games for the remainder of the season. So, Perez promptly allowed three hits along with four runs and then was pulled for Edward Mujica. Perez continued his plan the following Friday night in Arlington, allowing the Rangers to put up three runs on the board in two innings.

Unfortunately for Perez, it does not seem that his message has been heard. Following Cleveland's 7-5 victory over Texas Friday night, Wedge commented to reporters that "What hell do you expect me to do. If I don't bring Perez in, I'm bringing in someone that is certain to allow 3-4 runs. Do you realize I was AL manager of the year last year? I have a reputation to uphold. If a pitcher can't handle pitching every game, perhaps they would like to go back to doing what they did before baseball!"

Monday, August 11, 2008

Shoppach Switching To Maple Bats

TORONTO, ON - Kelly Shoppach, currently serving as full-time catcher with Victor Martinez on the DL, was seen with his right thigh wrapped in ice following Cleveland's 4-0 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays. Shoppach snapped his bat over his leg in the fourth inning after striking out for the third time in the game, leaving runners on first and third.

When asked by reports about the ice, Shoppach responded "I did the same stupid thing last year in July. My leg hurt for a couple of days, but I wasn't playing every day last year, so I was able to hide my injury using Lonnie's...uh...I...mean...anyways, I'm going to be switching to maple bats since they are easier to break. This should lessen the likelihood of injury."

The beat reporters then turned off their recording devices and put their notepads away and headed over to Cliff Lee's locker to ask him about his eight innings of shutout baseball, 17 total this year against the Jays. However our top notch beat reporter here at LFL stayed behind. He noticed something about Shoppach’s comments; he had begun to elaborate on hiding his injury last year, but stopped himself mid-sentence. He initially stated he had no comment when asked by LFL about this, but after a little bit of prodding, Shoppach revealed that upon arriving in Cleveland in the trade with Boston, he was given "Lonnie Soloff's Guide to Injury Hiding" - a four page pamphlet explaining how to best hide nagging injuries from coaches, front office personnel, fans and even the finest beat reports in Cleveland. He said it covers everything from avoiding questions regarding icing your shoulder after a game, even though you are the DH. To pretending you injured your hamstring, so no one will notice your elbow is killing you. To even paying off the bullpen radar gun operator so Luis Isaac won't notice your fastball is topping out at 79 MPH prior to the ninth inning.

Wedge responded to questions regarding this by saying, “Kelly has a vivid imagination, I wouldn’t take him too serious."