Signing with Arizona Diamondbacks ‘perfect’ for Oliver Perez

Mar 11, 2014, 3:47 AM | Updated: 3:48 am

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Oliver Perez had always thought about pitching for the Arizona Diamondbacks.

“Every time when we go see basketball (games at US Airways Center) we also go past the stadium (Chase Field),” he said. “I always tell my wife, ‘What do you think if I played right here?’ It can be perfect because right here is my second home. This can be perfect I think for anybody who lives around here.”

Living five minutes away from Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, near to Tatum Boulevard in Paradise Valley, Perez arrived at the perfect scenario Monday when he and the D-backs finalized a two-year contract.

It was important, he said, to be close to home because his wife is expecting their second child.

“(Tuesday) is going to be 40 weeks,” he explained.

Meanwhile, it was important for the D-backs to add another arm in the bullpen, especially a left-handed arm.

“We feel in our ballpark power kind of plays, not only with the bats but also with the arms,” GM Kevin Towers said. “To have a power left-hander now in our bullpen…it was something that we needed. It was an area we wanted to upgrade and we feel we’ve done it with Ollie.”

Perez, 32, was 3-3 with two saves and 3.74 ERA (22 earned runs in 53.0 innings) in a career-high 61 relief appearances for the Seattle Mariners last season.

He began his 11-year career as a starter, but made the transition to reliever when he joined the Mariners in 2012.

Perez said he now prefers coming out of the bullpen.

“It’s kind of more fun,” he said. “When you’re a reliever you’re normally going in a key situation. Your team is going to win or your team is going to lose. For me this is very exciting.”

Perez, according to Towers, is good against both left- and right-handed hitters allowing him to pitch multiple innings plus he holds runners on base and fields his position well.

He likened him to Brad Ziegler in that Perez can throw from different arm angles and could be used anytime in the sixth, seven, eighth or ninth innings, a bonus against hitters in the NL West.

“It’s nice to have a power left-hander for Carlos Gonzalez (of the Rockies), for Adrian Gonzalez (of the Dodgers), you turn Chase Headley around in San Diego, turn (Pablo) Sandoval around in San Francisco and (Brandon) Belt. Hopefully we’ve achieved that,” Towers said.

Penguin Air

Arizona Diamondbacks

Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zac Gallen reacts after giving up a three-run home run to Col...
Associated Press

D-backs squander 5-run lead in solid start from Gallen, lose to Rockies

Zac Gallen turned in another solid performance at hitter friendly Coors Field but the D-backs were unable to pick up the win.
1 day ago
Arizona Diamondbacks' David Peralta follows the flight of his single off Colorado Rockies starting ...
Alex Weiner

D-backs’ David Peralta blasts grand slam, climbs franchise HR list

D-backs outfielder David Peralta shot a hanging slider deep into the stands of right field for his third career grand slam.
1 day ago
Ryan McMahon #24 of the Colorado Rockies scores on a Kris Bryant RBI single against the Arizona Dia...
Associated Press

Arizona Diamondbacks pitching gets rocked in loss to Colorado Rockies

The Colorado Rockies scored 11 runs on 12 hits off of Arizona Diamondbacks pitching as the D-backs fell 11-7 on Saturday night at Coors Field.
2 days ago
Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel works against the Colorado Rockies during the ...
Jake Anderson

Dallas Keuchel roughed up in 2nd start for Diamondbacks vs. Rockies

It was a rough day at the office for D-backs left-handed starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel against the Rockies at Coors Field on Saturday night.
2 days ago
Cooper Hummel #21 of the Arizona Diamondbacks celebrates his home run against the Washington Nation...
Alex Weiner

D-backs recall OF Cooper Hummel, option 1B/OF Pavin Smith

The Arizona Diamondbacks recalled rookie Cooper Hummel and optioned first baseman Pavin Smith to Triple-A Reno, the team announced Saturday.
2 days ago
(Twitter photo / @Padres)...
Arizona Sports

San Diego Padres unveil colorful City Connect uniforms

The San Diego Padres released MLB's newest and perhaps most colorful City Connect uniforms with a blend of pink, green and yellow.
2 days ago
Signing with Arizona Diamondbacks ‘perfect’ for Oliver Perez