|Texas (47-33) «||1||2||0||0||1||0||0||0||x||4||7||0|
That won't be a problem if the young left-hander keeps pitching like this, throwing six-hit ball into the seventh inning in a 4-0 victory over the scuffling Cincinnati Reds on Friday night.
"Throwing strikes, pounding the strike zone, not getting caught in any patterns, great mound presence. All of the above," manager Ron Washington said. "He's doing everything he's supposed to do to be successful."
While Perez (2-1) went 6 2/3 scoreless innings and seems healthy, Reds starter Johnny Cueto (4-2) was gone a batter into the second inning because of tightness in his right lat muscle.
Cueto, their opening day starter who has already been on the disabled list twice this season because of similar issues, will be sent back to Cincinnati to see a doctor.
"It's the same thing," manager Dusty Baker said. "It happened in the first inning again. It's very discouraging for him and for us."
The 22-year-old Perez was the leading candidate for the No. 5 spot in the Rangers rotation before getting hit by a batted ball and breaking a bone in his forearm during a spring training game. He was called up from Triple-A Round Rock as the 26th man to start the first game of a split doubleheader at Arizona on May 27, then came back -- maybe this time for the rest of the season -- last Saturday, when he allowed only two runs in seven innings in a win at St. Louis.
"I just want to continue to do the same job. I don't want to change my routine," Perez said. "Throw my change-up, my sinker and my fastball away."
Perez allowed runs in each of the first two innings at St. Louis last weekend before holding the Cardinals scoreless over his last five innings.
Cincinnati has lost three games in a row, and six of seven. The Reds have been shut out in consecutive games, and six times this season.
The Rangers won 2-0 at the New York Yankees on Thursday to cap a 5-1 trip that included a three-game sweep of the Cardinals. Texas has won nine of 11 games since a six-game losing streak.
Texas went ahead to stay after scoring a first-inning run for the first time in 20 games, since June 7 at Toronto. Elvis Andrus reached on a one-out infield single, stole second base and scored on Adrian Beltre's single.
Cueto clearly grimaced on at least one pitch to Beltre, then did so again after throwing a 1-2 fastball that Mitch Moreland fouled off leading off the second. It was his last pitch.
Asked if there was any consideration to not send Cueto out for the second, Baker responded, "The doctor said sometimes things will loosen up, and he said he was OK."
It was only Cueto's third start since missing the first half of June while on the DL with a strained right shoulder. He also missed more than a month earlier this season because of a strained right lat.
Moreland took a called third strike on the first pitch thrown by Tony Cingrani, who then needed 37 more pitches to finish the second. He had four walks in the inning, all on full-count pitches.
Beltre had a leadoff single in the fifth and scored on a single by Profar, the 20-year-old rookie who had a couple of spectacular defensive plays at shortstop in a game when Andrus was the designated hitter.
Profar went way to his right to backhand Devin Mesoraco's grounder starting the third, planted his foot in short left field and made a strong throw to get the out at first. An inning later, Profar went up the middle to make another nifty grab and take a hit away from Brandon Phillips.
"Great defense," Perez said. "It's amazing."
|Shin-Soo Choo and the Reds didn't have much success against Texas with just 8 hits and 16 left on base. (USATSI)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Derrick Robinson, LF||4||0||0||0||0||2||2||.277|
|Shin-Soo Choo, CF||4||0||0||0||0||1||2||.265|
|Joey Votto, 1B||4||0||1||0||0||1||1||.321|
|Brandon Phillips, 2B||4||0||2||0||0||0||0||.268|
|Jay Bruce, RF||4||0||2||0||0||0||2||.278|
|Todd Frazier, 3B||4||0||1||0||0||0||3||.238|
|Chris Heisey, DH||3||0||0||0||1||0||3||.173|
|Devin Mesoraco, C||3||0||0||0||0||0||3||.239|
|Zack Cozart, SS||3||0||2||0||0||0||0||.247|
|2B - Zack Cozart (17, Frasor)|
|Team LOB - 7|
|DP - B. Phillips-Cozart-Votto|
|Johnny Cueto (L,4-2)||1||2||1||1||0||1||0||3.33|
|Pitches-Strikes - Johnny Cueto 29-18, Tony Cingrani 79-44, Alfredo Simon 29-21, Sam LeCure 13-8|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Johnny Cueto 1-1, Tony Cingrani 3-5, Alfredo Simon 2-2, Sam LeCure 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Johnny Cueto 5, Tony Cingrani 21, Alfredo Simon 7, Sam LeCure 3|
|Ian Kinsler, 2B||3||0||0||0||1||0||1||.295|
|Elvis Andrus, DH||3||1||1||1||1||1||1||.242|
|Nelson Cruz, RF||3||0||0||1||1||3||1||.265|
|Adrian Beltre, 3B||4||1||2||1||0||0||3||.298|
|A.J. Pierzynski, C||4||0||0||0||0||0||2||.292|
|Mitch Moreland, 1B||3||0||1||0||1||1||0||.277|
|Jurickson Profar, SS||3||1||1||1||1||1||1||.270|
|David Murphy, LF||3||1||1||0||1||0||1||.221|
|Leonys Martin, CF||4||0||1||0||0||1||4||.287|
|RBI - Elvis Andrus (26), Nelson Cruz (58), Adrian Beltre (42), Jurickson Profar (9)|
|2-OUT RBI - Elvis Andrus (12), Nelson Cruz (28), Adrian Beltre (19)|
|SB - Elvis Andrus (17, 2nd base off Cueto/Mesoraco), David Murphy (1, 2nd base off Cingrani/Mesoraco), Leonys Martin (14, 2nd base off Simon/Mesoraco)|
|Team LOB - 8|
|DP - Perez-Kinsler-Moreland, Perez-Kinsler-Moreland-Beltre-Kinsler-Moreland|
|Martin Perez (W,2-1)||6.2||6||0||0||1||3||0||2.37|
|Jason Frasor (H,3)||1.1||1||0||0||0||1||0||3.00|
|WP - Martin Perez (1)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Martin Perez 79-52, Jason Frasor 15-10, Robbie Ross 15-9|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Martin Perez 11-4, Jason Frasor 3-0, Robbie Ross 3-0|
|Batters Faced - Martin Perez 25, Jason Frasor 5, Robbie Ross 4|
|Attendance - 41218|
|Game Time - 2:51|
|Temperature - 100|
|Umpires - Home - Scott Barry, First Base - Mike DiMuro, Second Base - Ted Barrett, Third Base - Will Little|