Cleveland Indians’ Roberto Perez (finger surgery) out 8-10 weeks

Apr 23, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Indians catcher Roberto Perez (55) walks onto the field before the game against the New York Yankees at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Cleveland Indians catcher Roberto Perez will miss approximately two months after undergoing surgery Friday to repair a fractured right ring finger.

The Indians said Perez will be sidelined from 8 to 10 weeks. The team said he had three pins inserted into the hand.

Perez, who was placed on the injured list on Wednesday, sustained the injury in mid-April when he was crossed up by reliever James Karinchak and attempted to catch the pitch with his bare hand.

He attempted to play through the injury in ensuing weeks but it became apparent the hand was bothering the two-time Gold Glover when he began lobbing the before-inning throw to second base instead of firing it.

Perez, 32, was batting just .131 with three homers and nine RBIs in 19 games. He has a career average of .209 with 49 homers and 176 RBIs over 465 games in eight seasons with Cleveland.

Manager Terry Francona said Chris Hedges and Rene Rivera will split the catching duties while Perez is sidelined. The 37-year-old Rivera caught his first game of the season on Thursday and went 3-for-4 in a 4-0 victory over the Kansas City Royals.

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Hedges was listed as the starter for Friday’s game against the Cincinnati Reds.

“I would say we’ll see how it goes,” Francona told reporters before Friday’s game. “I think it’s easy to say, ‘Well, Rene had three hits yesterday, why don’t you play him today?’ But that was his first game that he’s actually caught nine innings. So, we don’t want to overdo him either.

“So, we’ll try to use good judgment. My guess is you’ll see Hedges catch more, maybe not quite as much as Roberto was.”

Hedges, 28, is batting just .118 with two homers and three RBIs in 11 games.

–Field Level Media