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Koji Uehara is the Red Sox’s new closer

Jun 21, 2013, 4:46 PM EDT

Boston Red Sox v Baltimore Orioles Getty Images

Andrew Bailey pitched himself out of the Red Sox’s closer role and manager John Farrell has settled on Koji Uehara as the new closer, according to Sean McAdam of

Uehara has long been one of the best, most underrated relievers in baseball and signed a one-year, $4.25 million deal with the Red Sox as a free agent this offseason despite coming into this season with a 3.13 ERA and ridiculous 188/26 K/BB ratio in 176 career innings.

He’s been fantastic in a setup role for the Red Sox this year, tossing 30 innings with a 2.10 ERA and 42/7 K/BB ratio while holding opponents to a .176 batting average. And he even has a little closing experience, saving 13 games for the Orioles in 2010.

  1. brickhead2012 - Jun 21, 2013 at 5:37 PM

    As an Oriole fan, I am sorry we only had him for a short time. He is a class act and didn’t want him to leave. But, thank you
    Andy McPhail for what we got for him. (Tommy Hunter and Chris Davis. Not too shabby!)
    I wish Koji well whenever he is not against the Birds. I do wish he wasn’t in the division now.

  2. sabatimus - Jun 21, 2013 at 5:42 PM

    I’m betting Bailey has some sort of injury he’s not telling anyone about. Ditto for Jon Lester.

    • tfbuckfutter - Jun 21, 2013 at 7:14 PM

      Jon Lester’s been nursing that phantom injury for an awful long time now.

      Since about September of 2011 if I’m not mistaken.

      • historiophiliac - Jun 21, 2013 at 9:24 PM

        Is it a bad case of suckitis?

      • tfbuckfutter - Jun 21, 2013 at 9:43 PM

        He caught averagetosis, and if he doesn’t deal with it very soon, it will turn into suckitis.

        In fact, it seems to flare up every now and then. It seems like he’s on the mend, then a nasty case of suckitis which settles back into averagetosis.

      • historiophiliac - Jun 21, 2013 at 10:30 PM

        Oh, just like Phil Coke then. His suckitis is chronic. It seems like it goes into remission and then poof! there’s a flare up. Well, really, his flare ups aren’t that rare. There’s probably a ginger joke in there somewhere…but then people will get all angry about that again, so let’s just call it the suckitis.

  3. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Jun 21, 2013 at 5:55 PM

    While I certainly wouldn’t give back Chris Davis and Tommy Hunter for him, he’s a terribly under-rated pitcher, and really should have been their closer all along. Old school scouts hate him, because they seem to think if a pitcher can’t throw 99 mph, they can’t close. Forget that he gets everyone out with amazing control and late movement on all of his pitches. He’s one of those saber-metric math-nerd type guys!

  4. unclemosesgreen - Jun 21, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    Koji’s “Hold” celebrations are hilarious – I can hardly wait to see his “Close” celebration for a traditional save.

  5. billymc75 - Jun 22, 2013 at 5:12 AM

    if u could get him to do it without sulking -Dempster would be a great closer

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