After blowing the save in Sunday's game on a wild pitch, Indians closer Chris Perez struggled again in the ninth inning in Monday's home opener. Taking the mound in the ninth inning with a 2-2 tie game, Perez showed little control from the start.
Facing the bottom three in the Rangers order, Perez allowed a double to leadoff man Joaquin Arias, saw Taylor Teagarden reach on a sacrifice and then walked Elvis Andrus to load the bases.
As Perez was escorted from the mound by Indians manager Manny Acta, the 42,061 fans in attendance rained down a loud round of boos on Perez, whose only redemption was that before releivers Tony Sipp and Jamey Wright somehow got of the jam unscathed.
That put the game in the hands of the Tribe offense, with Matt LaPorta, Luis Valbuena and Austin Kearns promptly going down in order.
But extra innings didn't last very long. Texas right fielder Nelson Cruz blasted his fifth home run of the young season, a two-run shot that proved the game winner.