The Indians have five players who could be gone in 2022.
The Cleveland Indians have five players who could be gone in 2022 if they decide that’s what is best for the team. Two of them, Roberto Perez and Jose Ramirez, have club options for 2022 and in Ramirez’s case, for 2023. So they can bring back both guys for $7 million (Perez) and $12 million (Ramirez) respectively.
The other three names that could be gone are Blake Parker, Bryan Shaw, and Wilson Ramos. All three men are in their mid-to-late 30s and two of them were key contributors to the bullpen. In the case of Ramos, he really didn’t get a shot to prove what he’s able to do due to injuries.
So that’s why when thinking about who to bring back, the answer was obvious that four of these men should return as the team attempts to get back to the playoffs. Yet, one player has proven that he is what he is, and what he is isn’t worth the salary he’s going to be getting.
Who shouldn’t return – Roberto Perez
This isn’t a flat-out “Roberto Perez bad” type of stance. Perez is a poor offensive hitter and save for 2019 and 2014, he’d be a below .200 career hitter. He’s not someone you can stick in the lineup every day and rely on. He just isn’t. He’s proven to be a sub .200 hitter and extremely inconsistent with the stick in his hands.
He’s not worth $7 million and the team would better off trying to put that money aside for an extension for Ramirez. That said, should the team decline the club option, which they should, and then come back and offer him a one year deal worth $1 million instead, then it’d be fine to bring him back with the idea that he’d be serving as the backup and not the starter.
If you want to make Austin Hedges the starter, Ramos, or a third party, sure. That’s worth a shot but we know what Perez is and isn’t and what he isn’t is a starting-caliber catcher. His defense doesn’t make up for the crater of offense he’s become.