Carlos Pérez (pitcher)
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|Born: April 14, 1971|
Nigua, Dominican Republic
|April 27, 1995, for the Montreal Expos|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 5, 2000, for the Los Angeles Dodgers|
|Earned run average||4.44|
|Career highlights and awards|
Pérez signed with the Montreal Expos as an amateur free agent in 1988. After being an All-Star pitcher in his debut season in 1995, Pérez's career looked extremely promising. However, he soon suffered an untimely and devastating injury which forced him to miss the entire 1996 season. After rehabilitation, he re-joined the Expos in 1997 but still displayed steady showings of his All-Star form. After several productive months into the 1998 season, Pérez was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers on July 31 along with Hiram Bocachica and Mark Grudzielanek for Peter Bergeron, Wilton Guerrero, Ted Lilly, and Jonathan Tucker.
By the time he became a Dodger, his potential for being a dominant left-handed major league pitcher was quickly slipping away. Frustration grew and Pérez had his two worst seasons in 1999 (2-10 in only 16 starts) and 2000, and he was relegated to the bullpen (after an entire career as a starter). On June 16, 1999, Pérez had an outburst during a game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Dodger Stadium. After consecutively walking Abraham Nunez, Francisco Córdova and Mike Benjamin to load the bases in the fourth inning, he was removed from the game by Dodger Manager Davey Johnson in favor of Jamie Arnold. Upon returning to the dugout, Pérez proceeded to destroy a water cooler with a baseball bat. (The Dodgers won the game, 6-5.) His performance soon thereafter, coupled with a legal issue stemming from an airplane flight in which a flight attendant accused Pérez of choking, threatening, and causing injury to her, forced him to an early exit from baseball.
Pérez was a highly animated player, especially when he was on the mound. Beginning in his rookie year, after every strikeout (and sometimes even after individual strikes), he made spastic movements, usually flailing an arm into the air while crouching very low to the ground and hopping in a semicircle (in the case of a strikeout, Pérez would react in unity with the umpire who was signaling the strikeout motion). Sometimes batters took offense to it while others realized or knew that it was just part of his routine.
Perez has gone on to play in his native Dominican Republic, to play winter ball, including the Caribbean World Series (2009) as well as the 2009 World Baseball Classic.
- Pérez hit four home runs, two triples, and eight doubles in his 250 official MLB at-bats.