Koji Uehara at NPB Tracker
Posted by simon c on 2008 June 24日 Tuesday
NPB Tracker has a good run down on the 33 year old Yomiuri Giants right handed pitcher Koji Uehara who announced in early April that he was going to the major leagues next season. This was a highly unusual move from Japanese players who are taught not to rock the boat, but not totally unexpected from this vocal character who had repeatedly declared his MLB ambitions while getting his posting requests denied by the team in the past. His career numbers from 1999-2007 are 106-57, 2.96 ERA, 1459.1 IP, 1304 K, 190 BB, and 172 HR.
He started off this season with an injury, which explains his record of 0-4, 6.75 ERA in 5 games started and 29.1 IP. He’s still rehabbing and hasn’t made an appearance in the minors yet, so his return is still a ways off (Edit: Uehara is back with the big club as of today without making a rehab appearance in a minor league game), and when he returns he’ll go to the Giants bullpen to setup for closer Marc Kroon if things go according to plan. He’s not getting any younger, but being an extreme control pitcher (never having walked more than 28 batters in a season, even though he’s pitched 200+ innings twice in his career and 160+ innings six times) in the mould of Greg Maddux, he could age well and can be a fine pick up for an MLB team as a #3 starter or so.