Chris Perez came off the disabled list yesterday after missing a month with a strained shoulder and manager Terry Francona wasted no time announcing that he’ll immediately resume closing for the Indians.
Perez struggled quite a bit before being shut down with the injury and fill-in Vinnie Pestano converted all five saves opportunities in his absence while posting a 2.45 ERA in 11 innings.
Also of note regarding Perez’s return from the DL, via Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer:
Before the game, Perez told a team official that he would talk to reporters, but only if two reporters were excluded from the interview. It did not appear Perez talked to reporters before the game.
While he was on the shelf Perez and his wife were arrested for allegedly having marijuana delivered to their house under their dog’s name, which is no doubt why Perez is trying to dictate the terms of his media engagement. Maybe all the Indians beat writers ought to ask to interview Perez’s dog.
Infielder Brett Lawrie successfully avoided arbitration and signed a one-year contract with the White Sox on Friday, per a team announcement. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman added that the deal was for $3.5 million, significantly lower than the $4.125 million Lawrie was paid by the White Sox in 2016.
The White Sox acquired Lawrie last December in a swap for minor league arms Zack Erwin and J.B. Wendelken. After splitting time at second and third base for the Athletics in 2015, Lawrie slotted in at second base and DH for the White Sox and batted .248/.310/.413 with 12 home runs in 384 PA. While it’s strange to see a healthy, fairly productive player receive a salary reduction in arbitration, Lawrie missed nearly half of the season with a strain in his left hamstring, though he’s projected to return at full health by the start of the 2017 season.
Left-hander Brian Duensing signed a one-year, $2 million contract with the Cubs on Friday, per a report from FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman.
The free agent spent the bulk of his 2016 season with the Orioles after receiving a call-up from Triple-A Norfolk in early June. He underwent elbow surgery several weeks later when a freak bullpen injury revealed cartilage chips and inflammation in his pitching elbow, but recovered to finish the season with a 4.05 ERA and 10 strikeouts in 13 1/3 innings for the club. The Orioles utilized him for a final out during the AL Wild Card game, during which Duensing recorded a five-pitch strikeout in the ninth inning of their 5-2 loss to the Blue Jays.
The 33-year-old is currently expected to bulk up the Cubs’ left-handed relief corps, with fellow left-hander Mike Montgomery slated for the rotation in 2017.