Here's why Steve in Queens and I get along so well. I'm sitting thinking about something to write about today, then I decide it has to be Oliver Perez, and lo and behold, there's an e-mail from Steve about Oliver Perez's performance in my e-mail. Thanks Steve. Here's what he had to say:
I would like to hear your thoughts about Oliver Perez and the fact that he is a mental case. I know this week's games are too late for you, as they are for me, but, I was able to watch the 50 minutes worth of the Mets blowing a golden opportunity in the top of the 1st and Perez only getting 1 out while giving up 6 runs in the bottom of the first.
If you get a chance to see any of his performance, I think you would agree that batting practice is more of a challenge than the garbage he was throwing last night. And, this wasn't his usual inability to find the plate in one random inning. I think his fastball topped out at 87 or 88 mph.
For someone in a contract year, he is certainly not helping his own cause (his wallet). What do you think is wrong with him and should the Mets already be thinking about signing someone else at the end of the season?
Steve from Queens"
My take on it was going to be more tongue in cheek, but I will say that before this season is out, Oliver Perez will have a huge game that will make all of this agony worthwhile. I just know it. Something is making me not hate the guy, and there's something there that tells me come late September or October, he'll remind us of the Oliver Perez circa October 2006. But I have no evidence to back that up, clearly. Just a hunch. Also, I was going to have a picture with this, but I'm having trouble putting it up, and I'm out of patience. It was Carlos Delgado with his hand on Perez from Monday night's game, consoling him, I guess. I put a caption on it that said, "Don't worry, I stink too." It was hilarious.
Now what I was originally going to say, with the caveat that I didn't make it out of the top of the first...the only person affiliated with the Mets to not make it further into the game than Perez:
Every so often you just have to stop and appreciate the moment. What we are witnessing in Oliver Perez right now is one of the most complex minds in the game. This is someone who was compared by one of his teammates to a wall, after getting pasted in an inning-and-a-third against the Pirates last month. (A wall gives up less runs and lasts longer than an inning-and-a-third, incidentally.)
But walls can't be so mentally in tune with the game that they will settle in to games of "Street Fighter" with Aaron Heilman in the clubhouse the day after tough losses. To be able to turn it on and off like that must be the type of thing that turn players like Greg Maddux green with envy.
Pedro Martinez* stated the other day that now that he's back in the dugout, with the team every day, Perez will benefit the most, and play better. Oliver Perez's response? One-third of an inning, six runs, five hits, two walks, 2 homers, 0 strikeouts. To the powerhouse San Francisco Giants.
It's not easy to understand the complexities of the human mind. It's a whole other story to understand Oliver Perez. And if geniuses like Rick Peterson and Pedro Martinez* can't figure him out, the rest of us don't stand a chance.
Cue the Southern Bureau.
LOOK FOR THIS TOMORROW: Nothing like a classic Maine-Cain matchup. John Maine versus Matt Cain on Wednesday.