Pérez hurt his right shoulder while making an off-balance throw in Friday’s season opener when he scrambled to retrieve a third strike that got past him. He slipped and fell while firing the ball to first.
A Gold Glove winner last season, Pérez has played since, but the shoulder has continued to bother him, so the Indians will shut him down for at least one week.
Manager Terry Francona said Pérez will not throw for seven days and then will be reexamined. While the Indians are on the road, Pérez will get treatment at the team’s alternate Lake County (A) facility.
“We have trainers over there, strength and conditioning guys, so he can stay in baseball shape,” Francona said. “Whether it’s two days, three days, four days, whatever it ends up being when he can start to do some things with that arm, he’ll have access to that.”
Pérez is one of baseball’s best defensive catchers and to lose him for any length of time is a blow to the team.
“It’s tough, to say the least,” said Shane Bieber, who struck out 14 in his opening day start with Perez catching. “Things could be worse, and we’re excited to potentially get him back within a week or 10 days. I just told him, ‘Get as healthy as quick as you can and we can’t wait to have you back.’
“But I feel like we have the depth and the catching core to definitely sustain our momentum right now, and we’ll be definitely fine going forward, but obviously Roberto is one of the best in the game if not the best, so it’s a tough blow.”
Backup Beau Taylor, who was recalled for the second game of Tuesday’s doubleheader, is starting the series finale against the Chicago White Sox, with Sandy León available off the bench.
The Indians recalled rookie outfielder Daniel Johnson to fill Pérez’s roster spot.