Pass or play – Koji Uehara 7/11/2016

With the knee injury sustained by Craig Kimbrel that will likely have him out for 6-8 weeks a great opportunity has appeared for the taking. This being the closer job for the Boston Red Sox.  A familiar name is the first man up. Koji Uehara is now 41 years old and his average fast ball speed has dropped to an average of 86.9 MPH. Then there is that splitter. A great swing and miss pitch (15.2% swinging strikes) that is the great equalizer. Dispite the decrease in fastball speed some of the numbers point to “better luck” going forward. Koji’s ERA is at 4.81 but his xFIP of 4.30 gives a hint that he has endured some misfortune that could very well even out. His biggest problem this season  has been control. with a 2.41 BB/9 and a 2.41 HR/9 tells me he has no idea where his pitches are going. The home runs rate is a head scratcher but, it is not his norm so we can only expect it to get better by not throwing his pitches in the heart of the plate. If you despretly need a closer for your team i’d say  grab him and see if he can regain the form he had. If you have a closer and think this may be an upgrade to your staff, I would advise to PASS  due to signs of eroding skills and his history of injuries he just doesnt seem like the same pitcher anymore.


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