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Indians players threatened to opt out if Mike Clevinger and Zach Plesac returned to team

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ESPN’s Jeff Passan has a report on the turmoil caused by Mike Clevinger and Zach Plesac’s night out in Chicago

MLB: Exhibition-Pittsburgh Pirates at Cleveland Indians Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff Passan dropped a report this morning that dives deeper into the turmoil caused by Mike Clevinger and Zach Plesac’s big night out in Chicago last week.

In his report, Passan cites sources that say players were not only disappointed in the fact that the two pitchers broke protocol by sneaking out of the team hotel room at night to meet with friends, but also their actions afterwards.

The most critical issue, sources said, was the breach of trust. While Clevinger and Plesac have tested negative for COVID-19, the potential exposure of the team to the coronavirus, including pitcher Carlos Carrasco, who was treated for leukemia last year, frustrated the team.

Some, such as veteran reliever Óliver Pérez, were so frustrated with the pair that they threatened to opt out of the season if they were reinstated. And he wasn’t the only one.

Despite their production, Oliver Perez, the 39-year-old left-handed reliever, said he would leave the team if Clevinger and Plesac returned to the roster in Detroit, sources familiar with the meeting said. Other players, sources said, felt similarly.

Francisco Lindor, who was vocally agitated shortly after this whole thing transpired, was reportedly outspoken in the meeting.

Further context provided by The Athletic’s Zack Meisel points to frustrations at Zach Plesac placing blame on the media and ignoring his teammates’ own thoughts on the matter.

The aforementioned meetings occurred after Clevinger and Plesac independently drove to Detroit to plead their case ahead of this weekend’s series against the Tigers. The team, front office, and coach staff all had discussions with and without the pitchers and ultimately the decision was made to option them to the team’s alternate site in Eastlake.