Perez suffered a finger injury, only to give it a go and see if he could push through.
Instead, he needed surgery and Sunday was his first game since May 3.
While he is not a force on offense, losing the veteran catcher was a huge blow to the pitching staff.
Now Perez is back to help guide a young pitching staff until the hurt veterans can return.
His return could prove to be pivotal for a handful of reasons.
The Indians activated Roberto Pérez from the injured list and designated René Rivera for assignment, as expected.
— Zack Meisel (@ZackMeisel) July 3, 2021
Leading The Rotation
Perez has proven to be the perfect guide for the starting rotation.
It is why the team was comfortable to move on from Yan Gomes and give Perez the full-time role after years as a reserve.
His play has only gotten better as of late, as Perez is a two-time defending Gold Glove winner at the catcher position.
His job now is to work with a young staff and do his best to call the game in their best interests.
A Potential Spark On Offense
It is tough to gauge Perez’s true abilities on offense because he has only played one full season, and that came in 2019 with 119 games played.
— Cleveland Indians (@Indians) July 4, 2021
He slashed .239/.321/.452 that year and hit 24 home runs.
That may be the area where he settles around when he does indeed get to play a full year.
Perez only has 20 games to his name this season and is batting .131.
But a slow start in April is nothing out of the ordinary for any player.
It is also unfair to judge someone after a few weeks of games.
So the hope now is that he can return to his 2019 ways at the plate and provide a spark in the lineup over the likes of Hedges and the now departed Rivera.
Both backups have a negative WAR on the year.
To be fair, they were backups for a reason and never expected to command serious playing time.
A Note On Rivera
The return of Perez has sent Rivera off into the world of DFA.
The 37-year-old appeared in 21 games for the Indians this year and did have an OPS of .700.
He was never going to stick around, but did prove he could hold his own in a backup role even at his veteran age.
So perhaps another opportunity is out there waiting for him.
All Indians fans care about is that Perez is back, as one more position on the roster has its regular occupant back.