Sunday, May 5, 2013

Victor Perez, An Example - 3236

Read the April 2014 interview: Victor Perez, That Feeling

Victor Perez spoke about his father in 2000, how his father viewed the game, and passed it on to his children.

The occasion was his father Tony Perez' induction into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame.

"If you know his favorite phrase - 'See the ball, hit the ball' - he works through doing," Victor Perez told The Cincinnati Enquirer after his father's selection. "That's the way he has worked all his life. That's the way he taught us. By being an example."

The elder Perez taught both his sons, Victor and Eduardo Perez by example. Both also went on to baseball careers. Eduardo went on to play in 13 big league seasons. Victor's career lasted just a single season of rookie ball, ending as he headed back to school to complete his degree.

Victor Perez' brief pro career began in 1990, signed by his father's old team the Reds as an undrafted free agent out of Xavier University.

Perez' life in baseball, though, started long before that, growing up the son of a central member of the Big Red Machine.

At just 14-months old, Victor Perez was there in 1967 with his mother to see his father in his first All-Star Game. It was the same game, held in Anaheim, where his father's 15th-inning home run won it for the National League.

After the late game, the father told of being unable to take his son to nearby Disneyland after the family arrived late the day before. The 14-month-old Victor seemed to enjoy his father's games just fine.

"He likes the games very much" the father told The Associated Press of his son. "When they play the music and yell 'charge,' he yells 'charge' too."

The next year, it was 2-year-old Victor who was on the mound for a Reds father-son game, Victor pictured with Pete Rose's daughter Fawn and the daughter of Red Chico Ruiz.

At 14 years old in 1980, Victor Perez was described as liking basketball. Still, he was there with his dad. In 1986, he was there with his dad, mother and brother as his father announced his retirement.

Then it was on to Xavier University for Victor. In 1990, he signed with his father's old team, the Reds.

With the Reds, Victor Perez played the season at rookie Billings. In 24 games, he hit just .143. It was his only year in pro ball. By 1991, he was back in school, finishing a degree in computer science, according to The AP.

Victor then moved on to New York City, making his living there. In 1992, though, he went to explore his family's roots in Cuba, according to The New York Times. His father was born there in 1942 and later left. Political turmoil had prevented the son from seeing his father's family until then.

"It was a culture shock, to be honest, when I finally met my father's family," Victor Perez told The Times. "They treated me from the first moment like one of them, but after all those years, it was like I had all these new relatives. It was very strange."

Read the April 2014 interview: Victor Perez, That Feeling
1990 CMC-Pro Cards Tally
Players/Coaches Featured:1,111
Made the Majors: 661 - 59.5%
Never Made Majors: 450-40.5%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors: 287
10+ Seasons in the Minors: 170

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