Martin Perez delivered a firm handshake with his right hand Friday night and extended his right arm to the side without a significant dip at the elbow.
He was proving his point, as if his words weren’t enough. The left-hander said that he will be ready to pitch for the Texas Rangers by Opening Day despite a freak off-season accident that resulted in a broken elbow.
“I am not going to miss any time,” Perez said before the Dr Pepper Rangers Awards Dinner. “I have conviction I will be ready the first day.”
General manager Jon Daniels said that the Rangers were expected Perez to miss the first month of the season after the Dec. 11 fall at his ranch in Venezuela. He underwent surgery Dec. 18 and has been rehabbing the injury in Texas for one week.
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Perez has also kept his throwing arm in shape and hopes to throw a bullpen session within the next week. All of this after one strange injury.
“What happened?” Perez said. “I knew you guys were going to ask me that. I have horses and cows on my ranch. My guys were working with the cows, and I was sitting on a fence. My brother said something and I looked back at him.
“Then I heard, ‘Watch out!’ I turned, and a bull was coming at me. I fell. I was trying to fall on my feet, and I landed on my elbow.”
Perez said that he wanted to tell the story to be completely transparent with the media and Rangers fans. He also wanted to make sure the media knew he’d be ready for the Rangers’ lid-lifter March 29 against the Houston Astros.