I had no idea that former Mets outfielder Timo Perez was still playing baseball, but apparently he is — or at least was — because he was just suspended for violating baseball’s drug program, presumably for PEDs. He and three other minor leaguers — Oakland outfielder Mitchell LeVier and minor league free agents Oscar Rodriguez and Kelvin Santana — were handed 50-game suspensions yesterday.
Perez was a semi-regular Mets outfielder for a handful of years in the early 2000s, but he was best known for his base running exploits n Game 1 of the 2000 World Series. He was on first base when Todd Zeile hit a long fly ball that Perez thought was a homer, which caused him to slow down into a trot. The ball hit off the outfield wall, however, and his lollygagging caused him to be thrown out at home. The Yankees ended up winning that game by one run in 12 innings so, yeah, it kind of stung.
Perez is 36 now. He hasn’t played in the bigs since 2007. He hit .304 with Toledo this year and became a free agent at the end of the season. Probably academic now, though, as my guess is that his career is over with this suspension.
Diamondbacks’ left-hander Anthony Banda is set to make his big league debut on Saturday, per a team announcement. The Diamondbacks recalled the southpaw from Triple-A Reno prior to the game after Taijuan Walker was placed on paternity leave.
It’s been a rough season for the club’s top prospect, who enters Saturday’s contest with a 5.08 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.3 SO/9 over his first 101 innings in Triple-A this season. The 23-year-old lefty carries a 7-5 record through his first 18 starts and is coming off of his worst outing of the year, during which he issued 15 hits, seven runs and just one strikeout against the Angels-affiliated Salt Lake Bees.
Facing Banda is Nationals’ right-hander Tanner Roark, who owns a 4.98 ERA, 3.3 BB/9 and 7.2 SO/9 through 106 2/3 innings in 2017. Roark pitched a respectable six innings in his last start, scattering four hits, three runs and five strikeouts en route to his seventh win of the season. He also has the added benefit of pitching behind one of the league’s most potent offenses, and boasts a hefty run support average of 5.68 runs per game.
The D-backs currently lead the Nationals, 1-0, and will face off for their second game at 8:10 ET on Saturday night.
ESPN’s Buster Olney reports that the Dodgers are “exploring a possible deal” for Mets’ right-hander Addison Reed. It’s not the first time the righty has incurred interest from a top contender. The Brewers, Yankees and Red Sox are all supposedly in on Reed, and Newsday’s Marc Carig adds that up to half a dozen teams have already made inquiries prior to the trade deadline.
Reed, 28, is currently in his third campaign with the Mets. He’s coming off of a career-best performance in 2016, during which he looked nearly unhittable with a 1.97 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.5 SO/9 through 77 2/3 innings. His numbers have regressed a little in 2017, but he’s still working with 16 saves and a solid 2.35 ERA, 1.2 BB/9 and 9.2 SO/9 through his first 46 innings.
While there’s no doubt Reed would help stabilize any bullpen he’s dealt to, the Dodgers may have less of a prominent position to offer the right-hander. Kenley Jansen has already locked down the closing role in Los Angeles, which would likely see Reed in some kind of set-up role as he finishes his last season before hitting free agency.