Koji Uehara’s 2014 option to vest with one more appearance
|08.12.13 at 1:16 pm ET|
Red Sox closer Koji Uehara has stabilized the back of his team’s bullpen while offering a dominating ninth-inning presence, recording a 1.35 ERA, 12 saves and striking out 74 while walking just nine in 53 1/3 innings this year. In his last 18 games (spanning 19 1/3 innings), he has not given up an earned run while striking out 25 and walking just two, with opponents hitting .109/.136/.125 against him since the start of July.
Now, it appears increasingly likely that the role is one in which Uehara may contribute not just for the rest of this season but also for next. According to an industry source, Uehara’s one-year, $4.25 million deal included a $4.25 million vesting option for the 2014 season that becomes guaranteed when he pitches in 55 games; incentives can push the value of the deal to $5 million with 35 games finished.
The 38-year-old now has appeared in 54 games, meaning that with his next appearance, his 2014 option will become guaranteed. Had the option not vested and had the Sox declined it, Uehara would have been eligible for free agency following this season.
In five seasons since coming to the big leagues from Japan, Uehara has a 2.58 ERA with the highest strikeout-to-walk rate (8.0 strikeouts per walk) in big league history.
Latest from Bleacher Report
- Unexpected Trades Red Sox Could Pull Off This Offseason
- Dream Free-Agent Pickups for Red Sox
- Red Sox Free Agency News and Trade Rumors
- Should Red Sox Trade Cespedes This Offseason?
- Red Sox's Most Tradeable Assets for Offseason
- Uehara Inks 2-Year Extension with Sox
- Possible Trade Partners, Packages for Cespedes
- Cup of Coffee: Witte walks off for Portland, Buttrey goes seven strong for Salem
- Cup of Coffee: Kopech drives Greenville past Charleston
- Cup of Coffee: Gunkel grabs first Double-A win, Craig reaches five times
- Cup of Coffee: Moncada breaks out, PawSox lose heartbreaker
- Cup of Coffee: Johnson goes six strong, Moncada picks up first hit
- Cup of Coffee: Moncada era begins; phenom scores twice in slugfest
- Weekly Notes: Moncada set to debut, Brian Johnson keeps producing
- Cup of Coffee: Kopech and Haley solid, Tejeda swinging a hot bat
- Yoan Moncada to debut with Greenville on Monday
- Cup of Coffee: Witte nearly hits for the cycle, Devers strong for Greenville