Martín Pérez’s time with the Red Sox is over
The calendar may as well have already flipped to 2022 as we’re beginning to see Chaim Bloom and the Red Sox begin to put work in on their roster for next season. Decisions are being made on team/player options as well as opt-outs. As far as the team options are concerned, news came out a short while ago that Boston won’t be picking up Martín Pérez for the 2022 season.
This should come as no surprise as the Red Sox declined his option ahead of the 2021 season just to re-sign him for a more club-friendly salary. Unfortunately for the southpaw, his poor performance in both the starting rotation and the bullpen all but guarantees he won’t be in a Boston uniform next season.
The writing was on the wall for the lefty once he got demoted to the bullpen as the season began to wind down. Had he been able to figure things out and show that he could be a reliable option in relief we may be having a different conversation right now but that just wasn’t the case. Unfortunately, it didn’t seem like he was thrilled at his new position within the team and it wound up being the beginning of the end for him.
Just like last winter, the Red Sox will gladly eat the $500K buyout in Pérez’s contract in order to have him become a free agent. A small fee in order to not only free up some cash in the budget but also a roster spot as well.
Pérez joined the Red Sox ahead of the COVID altered 2020 season and quickly became a fan favorite for his personality and willingness to leave everything on the mound. It didn’t matter if he had his best stuff or was getting shelled, he would do what he had to in order to help the team. That could mean mowing down the opposition or eating innings in a blowout to save the bullpen for another night.
In 2021, he’d tally a 7-8 record through 114 innings pitched with a 4.74 ERA. Pérez also managed a 1.509 WHIP, 2.8 BB/9, and 7.7 K/9, this season, which just wasn’t going to get the job done for the club. For me, Martín was the epitome of a clubhouse guy who was an absolute gem with this roster, but at the end of the day, you still have to be able to get it done on the field.
There were stretches in both 2020 and 2021 where ‘Pérez Day’ was one of the most looked forward to days of the week as the southpaw was firing on all cylinders. It always felt like he was just a few solid starts away from really getting things dialed in but there would always be that one start where the wheels would fall off after a few good ones in a row.
With 10 years of service under his belt and his 31st birthday right at the beginning of the 2022 season, I’m not sure what his options may be. He’ll definitely get some attention as left-handers will always get a chance to prove themselves, it’s just going to be a matter of where his prospective team wants to use him. I’ve enjoyed Martín with the Red Sox but as they say, all good things must come to an end.