The KC Royals had some players with good seasons, but not many saw as much success as the fan favorite catcher returning from injury.
The KC Royals don’t have much of the lineup left from their World Series runs. Of the players that made a large impact, Salvador Perez is the main thread left that holds the team to those great years.
Perez, many likely remember, missed the 2019 season due to Tommy John surgery. He was greatly missed. While the Royals young catchers did what they could to step in for the Gold Glove catcher, the atmosphere just wasn’t the same. Salvy is a leader and provides a great mood and example for the clubhouse.
Luckily, the catcher was back for 2020 and because of the delay in the season, it seemed as though he had more than enough time to recover.
There were some concerns about how Salvy would produce, having sat out an entire year. He put those concerns to rest early on, smashing the ball out of the park and showing the MLB that he hadn’t skipped a beat.
Salvy finished the season slashing .333/.353/.633, with 11 home runs, 12 doubles, 32 RBIs, and even a stolen base.
Perez appeared in 37 games and received 156 plate appearances. If not for an eye injury that kept him out for a few weeks, Salvy would have likely seen a majority of games moving between catcher, first base, and designated hitter.
Just the other day, Shawn Bauman wrote that Perez was a finalist for Comeback Player of the Year. This is no surprise, seeing the numbers he put up.
Now, Sporting News has announced their American League All-Star team and it includes the Royal’s catcher. The Sporting News All-Star team is chosen by a panel of American League executives.
These nominations for Perez are outstanding and likely help to build confidence for the catcher. While fans may have been concerned about how his 2020 performance would look, it’s likely Perez had some reservations himself as well.
After surgery, it’s not out of the question for players to struggle to find their footing. Whether it is due to being out of the game for an extended time, or fear of reinjury, it would have been reasonable to assume Perez would struggle to come back.
Thankfully, he was able to show that he is not done yet. The catcher is 30 years old, and while some have questioned how long he will be able to continue catching regularly, if 2020 was any indication, it seems that Salvador Perez will be around a while longer.
Salvador Perez was named to the Sporting News AL All-Star team.