Cleveland Indians catcher Roberto Perez said he didn't intentionally get hit by the pitch that cost Carlos Rodon a perfect game Wednesday and had no idea the Chicago White Sox left-hander hadn't allowed a baserunner at the time.
"To be honest, I really didn't think he had a perfect game until I got hit," Perez said, according to MLB.com's Scott Merkin.
"I thought he had a no-hitter going on, but I really didn't think he had a perfect game. So, it's hard, man. I'm not going to try to stand there and get hit, you know? Especially after a night like tonight that it was cold. But that's just part of the game. That's all I can say."
Even though Rodon recovered to toss the 20th no-hitter in franchise history, White Sox fans, including Rodon's wife Ashley, weren't buying what Perez had to say.
With one out in the ninth inning and no runners reaching base, Rodon hit Perez's back foot with a slider.
The White Sox pitcher said in a postgame interview with MLB Network that he was thinking, "not back foot, don't hit him on the top of the foot" before throwing the pitch that hit Perez.
"You think those thoughts, that's what happens," Rodon said.
As for the brief exchange between Rodon and Perez that happened after the hit-by-pitch, the left-hander said he was merely asking the Indians catcher if the pitch actually hit him, and there was "nothing naughty there."
Rodon's no-hitter is the second one thrown during the 2021 campaign. San Diego Padres right-hander Joe Musgrove no-hit the Texas Rangers on April 9.