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It’s Important to Oliver Perez That You Know He’s Still Alive

We know that everyone loves to pick on Oliver Perez. This is probably because it's difficult to find a player in baseball more easily picked on than Oliver Perez. The amount the Mets have paid him over the last two years (one more to go!), compared to his results on the field, is so crazed that it's a surprise he's not a bridge in Alaska. Here, we're just going to remind you:

Oliver Perez, two-year stats:

3–9, 6.81 ERA, 99 K, 100 BB, 112 1/3 IP.

For that they have paid him $24 million. With $12 million to go. It is a catastrophic contract, and every day that new GM Sandy Alderson sees him at camp, he must groan and keel over, as if he has been attacked by the stomach flu, or perhaps a parasite.

But at camp Perez is, regardless. In fact, he was so eager to make it to camp that he arrived before they'd even opened the facility. Nice little metaphor for Perez's Mets career: He shows up to Spring Training, and he's locked out.

The usual "he looks great this spring!" stories have hit, but obviously no one believes them because this is Oliver Perez. Perez says he wants to start this year, which is helpful for Alderson, because the new GM just desperately wants to cut Perez but would have more difficulty justifying it if Perez were a moderately successful left-handed relief specialist. As a starter, though, well, it won't take long for Perez to be Perez again, and the Mets will be able to move on with their lives.

For what it's worth: Someday we think Perez is going to throw a shutout against the Mets, costing them a playoff spot, just because it would make a sort of mad sense.

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Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images