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8/15/1981 (35 y, 6 m, 10 d)
$7M / 2 Years (2016 - 2017)
Perez heads into 2017 as the top LOOGY in the Nationals' bullpen. (2/2/2017)
Oliver Perez, Somehow A Potential Bargain
Mike Petriello (FanGraphs)
Oliver Perez: Pitcher You Want
Jeff Sullivan (FanGraphs)
SEA Mariners Bullpen: Depth Chart Discussions
Colin Zarzycki (RotoGraphs)
The Feast of Oliver the Negligible
Patrick Dubuque (NotGraphs)
Oliver Perez Is Good Now. Seriously.
Dave Cameron (FanGraphs)
(Click Year to Expand /
Year in Review:
One of 16 Mets players to participate in the World Baseball Classic, Perez was overused in the tournament, at one point throwing 85 pitches for Mexico in a mid-March game. Then, when he joined the Mets, Perez was allegedly overweight. He was lit up in four of his first five starts before being placed on the disabled list with an injured knee. When Perez returned in July, he was much better, although still not pitching deep into games. He was 2-1 with a 4.12 ERA and three times left with a lead only to have the bullpen unable to hold it. Perez’ 2009 season then came to an end when he hurt himself covering first base in his penultimate start. His final outing of the year ended with a line of 0.2 innings and six earned runs. He finished 2009 with a 6.82 ERA, the third-worst mark in the Majors among pitchers with at least 50 innings pitched.
The Year Ahead:
While he was one of the worst pitchers in baseball last year, Perez had a 15-win season with a 3.56 ERA in 2007 and is still just 28 years old. One thing Perez definitely gives fantasy players is strikeouts. He had an 8.45 K/9 last season and has a 9.20 lifetime mark in the category. The key for Perez is keeping his walks down. In 2007, he had a 4.02 BB/9 rate. It was 7.91 last year. Four times in his eight-year career, Perez has had a BB/9 rate below 5.0 and in three of those he also had a below-average HR/FB rate and was a useful fantasy pitcher. Inconsistent both year-to-year and start-to-start, Perez is not draft-worthy in a standard mixed league. At the same time, fantasy owners should monitor his walk rate, as a mark below 5.0 BB/9 makes him worth a waiver pick. (Brian Joura)
Had he qualified for the ERA title last year (stay with me here), Oliver Perez would have almost doubled the worst qualified walk rate out there (Jonathan Sanchez, 4.48 BB/9, Perez, 8.16 BB/9). Words almost fail to describe how bad Perez has been over the past two years, perhaps the numbers can do the trick. He's had an FIP over six in his last 100+ innings over those two years. Though he's struck out just over eight batters per nine over that stretch, he's walked MORE batters in the same period. That's before getting to his flyball tendencies (32.9 GB% career). Yeah, maybe those numbers did it. Perez may be one of the worst pitchers in baseball, and even a move to the pen wouldn't do much to save his career at this point. (Eno Sarris)
The Quick Opinion:
Oliver Perez is in contention for the worst pitcher in baseball. Don't pick him up, don't ever pick him up.
The career of Oliver Perez is an exact baseball transcription of Voltaire’s Candide, minus most of the jokes. The transformation of Perez from wild flamethrower to social pariah to control artist reliever is nothing short of remarkable, although since nobody actually remembers how Candide ends, 2013 is anyone’s guess. There are a couple of clues, however: that 0.3 home runs per nine rate is probably going to go up, though the impact of Safeco’s creeping fences remains to be seen. He actually fared better against righties (.204/.279/.296) than lefties (.281/.328/.351) last season, though of course it was only thirty innings. Oliver the Negligible is unlikely to have a major fantasy impact, with plenty of young guys with fastballs around him in the bullpen, but holds leagues might be able to use him as a cheap fill-in when the M’s have a homestand. (Patrick Dubuque)
The Quick Opinion:
Although the best part about drafting Oliver Perez might be the quizzical tone you can take while uttering his name, Perez could prove value – in certain leagues, under certain conditions, during certain phases of the moon.
Since coming to the Mariners in 2012, Oliver Perez has been dominant against left-handed hitters, holding them to a .288 slugging percentage last season with his sinker-slider combination. Oliver isn’t a disaster against righties, but he’s not good enough to be competing for a closer’s job. Perez is best used as a high-leverage LOOGY (lefty one-out guy) type or middle reliever, and with his walk rate in double digits, he’s not a guy you’re going to roster in 2014. (Zach Sanders)
The Quick Opinion:
Oliver Perez has revived his career as reliever, though his struggles against righties and high walk rate should keep him off fantasy rosters.
Control remains Oliver Perez’s biggest problem, but it’s been easier for him to overcome in the last few years. His move to the bullpen, mechanical alterations, and changes in pitch usage (primarily, the addition of a sinker and more reliance on the slider) facilitated that development. He’s become a somewhat dependable reliever who isn’t purely a specialist and can rack up strikeouts and is thus a candidate for late-innings work, possibly in save situations when his team has a need. The facts that the 33-year-old is left-handed and still occasionally erratic preclude him from consistent work in such a fantasy-friendly role. In Arizona, need could again be not far from arising, however, and he should continue to contribute occasionally for those in deep holds leagues, regardless. He’s not the ideal NL-only pickup, but fantasy owners could do worse in times of their own necessity. (Nicholas Minnix)
The Quick Opinion:
Perez has found a home in the bullpen, where he’s not just a LOOGY. He’s not a likely source of saves, either, but he could again help deep leaguers in strikeouts and, occasionally, holds.
It's been TWELVE years since Oliver Perez put up a 2.98 ERA as a 23-year-old Pirate. That should make some readers feel old. Perez hasn't started a game at the big league level in five years and will head into his age-34 season as a reliever for the Nationals. He bounced around a bit in 2015, opening the season in Arizona before being traded to Houston for their playoff run. His ERA took a big hit in Texas, although his xFIP was 3.56 before the trade and 3.77 after so it's not like he was a different Perez. He's posted big strikeout rates over the last couple years, but mediocre control seems to limit his WHIP upside. After having reverse splits (better against righties) in 2014, he went back to only being mediocre against opposite-handed hitters last season, which seems to imply that he's not a great candidate to be in the hunt should a closing gig open up. That said, he can still hold his own against all hitters and could be a source of some cheap strikeouts and holds if you are willing to push someone else out of a slot and can stomach the potential hit in WHIP. (
The Quick Opinion:
Oliver Perez has really reinvigorated his career as a relief pitcher. The fact that he's still a few steps back from the ninth inning makes him a non-entity if you are trying to speculate for saves, but he could help occasionally for strikeouts or in leagues where you need to rack up holds.
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Updated: Saturday, February 25, 2017 3:33 AM ET
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