Originally posted on Fox Sports Ohio  |  Last updated 8/20/12
The Indians must suspend Chris Perez. He earned it. He earned it by representing the Indians the team, the organization and its fans in a classless, boorish way with that discussion with the fan in Oakland. (For those that missed the news, Perez was caught on camera over the weekend in Oakland engaging in a pregame argument with an A's fan, directing a series of expletives toward the fan before asking that the fan be removed and walking away.) Perez needs to hear the team's message, loud and clear. What he did was vile and crude. The Indians should never want a player representing them on the field, in uniform, the way Perez did. Suspend him. This does not exonerate the fan, who clearly wanted to annoy and harass Perez into just what happened. Fans taunt endlessly these days, and they get away with it. The fan may have been relentlessly obnoxious prior to the video. He's may be at home today, celebrating his little victory. Let him live in his small world; Perez can stay out of it. Problem is Perez gave this oaf what he wanted: Attention. Let's also not pretend it's the first time something like this happened. Fans taunt players into this kind of thing way too often, as if the price of a ticket gives someone license to be a loudmouth bully. What the fan did matters, but it doesn't excuse. The Oakland A's organization can handle that guy, and if he crossed any lines the team should handle it. The Indians can handle Perez. The fan does not play for the Indians, does not represent the team and its fans. Perez does, and he let them all down. He may have had his reasons for his angry response, and the reasons may be convincing, but his behavior was wrong. Perez has to walk away. He didn't. It was caught on film, and it's embarrassing to the Indians. Suspend him simply for not acting the way a professional should act. That's the first issue. The second is the way Perez addressed the fan, which should cause the Indians some concern about his long-term future with the team. That is because he made the most me-oriented statements imaginable. In response to being heckled, Perez asked: What's my salary? He pointed out he was an All-Star. He said he had more saves than the entire Oakland A's team. Wonderful. In response to a fan, Perez talks about how great he is. This is logical? It almost seems like one of those moments when a person is cornered and then reveals what they are about. Perez in the past has come across as a team guy, a guy who criticized the Indians fans for not buying tickets because he cared about the team. He seemed, briefly, to galvanize the team. Now the team is losing and he pulls out the what's my salary card? As if the holy dollar is what matters, as if the fact he makes more money than the fan makes him better. Maybe it does matter, to him. This is a really shocking response. If that's what it's about to Perez, maybe the Indians need to discuss his future with them. Maybe he revealed himself for what he truly is. Perez has been such a cooperative, stand-up guy that you want to not believe it, but it sure comes across that way in this situation. It might be a good idea for the Indians to remind Perez of the only man whose jersey number has been retired by Major League Baseball: Jackie Robinson. As the first African-American in baseball, Robinson put up with more and heard more than Perez will ever dream of. He handled it with grace and silence. The same is no doubt true of former Indian Larry Doby, the first African-American in the American League. Their silence was infinitely louder than the garbage that came out of Perez's mouth. Perez embarrassed Robinson's memory, all of baseball, the Indians, its fans and the city. He needs to hear a message, and the team needs to send it. Suspend him.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Hall of Fame pitcher and former U.S. Senator Jim Bunning passes away at 85

Roger Goodell to speak at Rams event, tickets start at $550

Ohio State hails itself as the ‘fastest team in college football’

Get a look at Shia LeBeouf as John McEnroe in Borg/McEnroe movie trailer

Draymond Green is the most efficient defender in the NBA

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

It’s not even June, but the San Francisco Giants are probably screwed

Odell Beckham Jr. appears to take shot at Ben McAdoo

Report: Seahawks players feel Sherman bombshell story ‘nailed it’

Turkey: Kanter a member of terrorist group, issues warrant

Chad Johnson says Roger Goodell consulted him on touchdown celebration rule change

Kevin Durant is not to blame for the NBA’s lack of parity, and he knows it

Best of Yardbarker: Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines

The 'More like Whiffer, Texas Ranger...amirite?' quiz

The Rewind: Vince Carter's graduation day celebration that wasn't

Manu Ginobili gave life to the San Antonio Spurs

Stanley Cup Final: A David vs. Goliath matchup that's not as lopsided as it may appear

Why the Indianapolis 500 is called 'the greatest spectacle in racing'

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Box Score 5/26: Bring on the Finals

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

Kicking It: East is East, and West is West

Three Up, Three Down: Some surprises way out (NL) West

The 'Let's go to the videotape!' quiz

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines

The 'More like Whiffer, Texas Ranger...amirite?' quiz

Stanley Cup Final: A David vs. Goliath matchup that's not as lopsided as it may appear

Manu Ginobili gave life to the San Antonio Spurs

The Rewind: Vince Carter's graduation day celebration that wasn't

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Kicking It: East is East, and West is West

Three Up, Three Down: Some surprises way out (NL) West

The 'Let's go to the videotape!' quiz

Why the Indianapolis 500 is called 'the greatest spectacle in racing'

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker