May 5, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Texas Rangers starting pitcher Martin Perez (33) reacts after giving up a run in the third inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Martin Perez of the Texas Rangers had an amazing start to the 2014 season. In his first 5 starts of the season, Martin Perez only gave up 6 runs on 26 hits while striking out 23 and walking just 9. The last two games in that five game stretch were back to back shutouts. That even prompted me to ask if he was the new Texas Rangers Ace.
A few things have changed since then. Yu Darvish has been Yu Darvish, which means that he has been brilliant as usual and asserted himself as the true Texas Rangers ace, and Martin Perez has had an implosion of epic proportions. In his last 3 starts Martin Perez is 0-3, his ERA went from a 1.42 to a 4.38. He has surrendered 19 runs on 24 hits, striking out only 12 while walking 10. Another words, a complete and total turn around from his previous five starts.
The question now remains; will Martin Perez get back to the dominant player that he was in April? Is he hurt? Has he lost all confidence? What is going on with him? As the broadcast mentioned several times last night, I believe that it is all about location. He is not locating his pitches nearly as well as he was in his first 5 starts, and it is showing. Martin Perez is not the only pitcher in history to have such a historic turnaround during a season, and if he can get back to throwing quality strikes, he will not be the only pitcher in history to be able to come back from it and pitch well again. I still have faith that the 23-year-old left-handed Venezuelan will be able to have a good season when all is said and done. I believe that Mike Maddux will be able to sort out what is wrong with Martin Perez and straighten it out soon.
Even Yu Darvish, Derek Holland, Cliff Lee and many others have gone through rough patches in their careers when they were at he top of their games. Lets all hope that a rough patch is all that this is for Martin Perez and we can all be back to having a feeling of confidence when he takes the mound.