08/20/12 8:55 PM ET
Perez addresses video incident with Oakland fan
By Jordan Bastian / MLB.com
On Monday, Perez addressed the profanity-laced exchange that was captured on video and posted publicly for the world to see. He said the incident, which took place during batting practice prior to Saturday's game in Oakland, includes more history than was portrayed in the clip that ran just shy of two minutes.
"He's been wearing me out for four [seasons]," Perez said. "I had enough. I'm not even playing a game. I'm shagging [fly balls]. I can understand if it's during the game. That's part of the game and stuff, and it wasn't just a random guy that I pointed him out and went over.
"It was the same guy. Four [seasons], just on me, on me, about everything. I get that some of it's playful and everything, but some of the stuff is not playful."
Indians manager Manny Acta and general manager Chris Antonetti have both discussed the situation with Perez.
"We spoke to Chris," Acta said. "He knows what went on there and he's going to handle it better going forward. He obviously was set up, as everybody saw. He'll learn from it.
"It's something that, I don't want to elaborate much on it, but it just didn't happen overnight. I guess the guy has been on him for as long as he's been going over there."
This is just the latest in a string of controversies for Perez this season.
The two-time All-Star was fined by Major League Baseball earlier this season for a message on Twitter that was viewed as taunting the Royals. Perez also challenged a segment of the Indians' fan base earlier this season, complaining about Cleveland's poor attendance and the fact that he had been booed at home.
In the recent video, a fan wearing A's apparel heads to the wall along the right-field line and taunts Perez, trying to get the pitcher to walk toward him. Perez said he was in right-center field on Saturday trying to avoid this particular fan, who has typically heckled the closer near his usual pregame spot in left-center field.
Perez said the fan in question heckled the pitcher during the team's series at Oakland in April, too.
Perez took the bait, walked toward the fan and the pair engaged in an angry exchange. Before heading back to the outfield, Perez motioned to a security guard and attempted to have the fan thrown out of the game.
"I ignored it for [several minutes]," Perez said. "And then I was like, 'What's your problem? If you've got something to say, come to my face and say it down in the bullpen.' And that's what happened. Obviously, in the video you can tell his ulterior motives. It's unfortunate, but it's out there. I've just got to live and learn from it.
"I don't regret it. ... Looking back, obviously it's not the best thing that it would be on the Internet and stuff. I had no idea [they were filming me]. I wouldn't have done it. Looking back, that's obviously what he was trying to get and it happened. So, he got me. You have to live and learn."
Perez said his experiences with other Oakland A's fans have been positive.
"They're good fans. They make a lot of noise," Perez said. "Our bullpen is right there [near the fans] and they're all nice, all those people are nice. He's an isolated incident. I've never had any problems warming up or anything like that in Oakland."