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Tribe closer Perez not down after blown saves

Tribe closer Perez not down after blown saves

Tribe closer Perez not down after blown saves
CLEVELAND -- After Chris Perez blew his second consecutive save for the Indians on Tuesday night, the closer said he may need to look at video to solve his recent problems.

On Wednesday, he dismissed the idea.

"I still haven't watched video," Perez said. "I don't need to, because I know it's just minor, nothing major. If I was throwing stuff to the backstop and hitting guys, that's a major mechanical issue. ... It's just little things that are painful."

Perez met with pitching coach Scott Radinsky in the clubhouse on Wednesday morning, and the two discussed the possibility that the All-Star closer has been tipping his pitches. Perez allowed three runs in Cleveland's 7-5 loss to the Twins on Tuesday, and he gave up five runs with two outs in a 10-8 extra-inning loss to the Tigers on Sunday.

Perez had converted 29 of his first 31 save opportunities.

"I just keep opening up to hitters, and they're seeing the ball really well, obviously," Perez said. "I felt good last night. The one in Detroit -- that's [a] lack of concentration, that's something."

Perez struck out Joe Mauer to begin the ninth inning Tuesday, but then the struggles began. Josh Willingham muscled a single to right field, stole second and scored after an error by first baseman Casey Kotchman on a ball hit by Justin Morneau.

Perez wasn't upset with Kotchman because it was a tough play, but Perez was upset with himself for letting Willingham steal second.

"I was more mad I didn't hold the runner better, honestly," Perez said. "If I would have held him better, Kotchman's [covering] on first, [and] that might be a one-hop right to him instead of getting that second hop, and it might be a double play."

Still, even amid his recent blown saves and the team's 11-game losing streak, Perez seemed in good spirits on Wednesday. Manager Manny Acta walked through the clubhouse, patted his closer on the back and told him to keep his head up. Perez had a simple response.

"I just want to get back out there," he said.

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