It was a day game after a night game, a contest the catcher normally would get off.
The last-place Royals are looking to 2012 and beyond, so Perez joins three rookies in the starting infield -- first baseman Eric Hosmer, second baseman Johnny Giavotella and third baseman Mike Moustakas.
"He'll play quite a bit," Royals manager Ned Yost said of Perez.
Perez was considered the Royals' catcher of the future. The future has arrived.
He went 2-for-4 on Thursday in a 4-1 loss at Tampa Bay. In his debut on Wednesday, he went 1-for-3 with a sacrifice fly, scored a run and picked off two Rays' runners.
Perez also caught five pop flies on Wednesday. According to STATS Inc., which can go back as far as 1974, he is only the fourth catcher to record at least five putouts by popups in a game.
Keith Moreland had six for the Cubs on June 13, 1983. Jim Essian had five for the White Sox on July 7, 1976, and John Marzano had five for the Mariners on June 11, 1997.
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