By JASON STELLA
Perez, who was signed by the Reds as a free agent in 2010, has seen his batting average steadily increase each month of the season, culminating with a sizzling .360 clip thus far in August. After a relatively quiet start over the first portion of the year, Perez has continued to progress as an offensive weapon, putting up a .327 average in June and a .352 mark in July.
Currently, the left-handed Perez, who has hit in all nine spots in the batting order this year, leads the team with 112 hits and a .299 cumulative batting average. Perez is also tops on the club with seven three-hit games, and also registered a four-hit game in a June 26 win against Buffalo. In just his third professional season, the 27-year-old Perez has set career highs in most offensive categories, including hits, games (111), doubles (24), and RBIs (35).
Perez, who was born in Cuba, spent the majority of last season in double-A with the Mudcats, putting up respectable numbers before getting a late season call-up by Louisville and playing in nine games with the Bats. Perez parlayed that experience into a full-time job with Louisville this year, and has never looked back.
Since Perez is not on the Reds’ 40-man roster, a late season major league debut appears unlikely for the six-foot-two Perez. If he continues his steady improvement, however, and takes his success into the offseason, he could position himself for an invitation to a major league spring training in 2013.