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Former Cards Reliever Chris Perez Injured

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Chris Perez in a 2011 season photo (Getty/David Maxwell)

Chris Perez in a 2011 season photo (Getty/David Maxwell)

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GOODYEAR, Ariz. (AP) - Cleveland Indians closer Chris Perez is out at least one month and possibly six weeks with a strained muscle in his side.

The former St. Louis Cardinals reliever strained his left oblique during his first bullpen session of spring training. Trainer Lonnie Soloff said Perez will need four to six weeks to recover from the injury.

Perez will not be able to pitch in games until the end of the exhibition season. Soloff has not ruled out Perez from being available for opening day because he’s a reliever and does not have to build up as much stamina as a starter.

Perez had 36 saves and a 3.32 ERA in 64 games last season.

Soloff said the right-hander’s “body was not prepared for the intensity of the bullpen session.”

Soloff said Perez sustained the injury late in his first workout off the mound.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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