Royals catcher Salvador Perez left Monday’s game against the Astros after slamming into the fence in front of the home dugout at Houston’s Minute Maid Park while trying to track down a foul popup.
Perez has been diagnosed with a deep right hip bruise, according to beat writer Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star, and is not in the Royals’ starting lineup on Tuesday. He’s considered day-to-day.
Perez, 23, is batting .308/.324/.413 with 10 doubles, one home run and 14 RBI in 39 games this season. With great defensive skills and a burgeoning bat, he is considered one of the most promising young players in baseball. George Kottaras is filling in for him behind the plate on Tuesday night.
On Monday, Cubs catcher Willson Contreras showed he was very confident heading into the 2018 season, saying, “I know that I’m going to be better than [Yadier Molina and Buster Posey].” Contreras explained that his goal is to become “the best catcher in the game for a long time — like it was with Yadier Molina, like it is with Buster Posey.”
Apparently, Contreras ruffled Molina’s feathers as the Cardinals’ veteran backstop took to Instagram to respond. Posting a picture of himself with Buster Posey and Salvador Perez, Molina wrote, “Respeten los rangos NOVATOS!! aqui con los q si han probao que son los duros!!” That loosely translates to “respect the ranks,” referring to Contreras as a novice.
Molina is no stranger to using Instagram to air his grievances. He apparently used the social media app to take a swipe or two at manager Mike Matheny last year.
Of course, Molina seems to be misreading the intent of Contreras. Contreras seems to think highly of Molina, having referred to him as being one of the best catchers in the game — even if it was in the past tense. Molina should know, being someone who also competes at the highest level, that having confidence is an important part of the recipe for success. Perhaps this will make for some interesting games during the season, breathing new life into the Cubs-Cardinals rivalry.