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Why Koji Uehara has been inspired by Chris Davis’ historic start

04.06.13 at 1:57 pm ET

TORONTO ‘€“ Chris Davis‘€™ historic start might not only be helping the Orioles. Evidently, it might be offering some assistance to the Red Sox, as well.

Red Sox reliever Koji Uehara said Saturday morning that Davis has added some motivation for these early-season games. Why? Uehara evidently feels somewhat of a sense of responsibility to live up to the lofty standards set by Davis because the two were traded for one another July 30, 2011.

‘€œThe season he’€™s having so far has been an inspiration for me,’€ Uehara said through a translator.

Uehara explained that he had never heard of Davis prior to being traded for the first baseman (and Tommy Hunter), but the ‘€œnew experience’€ of being dealt for the first time in his professional career led to his attention to Davis’€™ exploits.

The Red Sox reliever said, however, that his awareness regarding Davis’€™ start ‘€“ which includes a record 16 RBI over the first four games ‘€“ is truly driven by wanting to follow the team he played his first three major league seasons with, the Orioles. Davis is 2-for-4 against Uehara, although the reliever did strike out the slugger in their last meeting, the one-game playoff at the conclusion of last season.

Thus far, Uehara is doing a fairly good job of keeping pace with Davis. The righty has needed just 14 pitches to cruise through the only six batters he has faced.

‘€œThe number of pitches he’€™s thrown has been about as minimal as you can get,’€ said Farrell of Uehara. ‘€œThe urge, or the tendency, is going to be to call his name all the time. He loves to compete. You see the energy he comes off the field with after completing an inning. Fortunately we’€™ve got the depth that we do. And the quality that we do. We’€™ll have the ability to spread some things out and Koji will be a guy who will factor all those things.’€

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