Meet the Red Sox closer, Koji Uehara, a game over type of approach that you just gotta love.
He pounds the strike zone and he attacks the hitters with every single pitch.
It was lights out, game over for the Colorado Rockies last night at Fenway. Koji Uehara bounced onto the mound and attacked the hitters. You could almost hear the Pac-Man sound signaling end of game in the background with every single pitch.
There was no nail biting, no feeling of doom, and he did the job efficiently. In the 9th inning he threw 13 pitches, to 3 hitters, 10 of 13 for strikes, and struck out 2. He threw his 4 seam fastball at 90 mph, mixing in 4 splitters at 81 mph. The last ones were dropping a whopping 9 inches in vertical height, which combined with the speed change was a lot of fun for the fans to watch.
As an opposing hitter, not so much.
Are you drooling yet?
It's official, we have a closer.
This guys has fans around the globe, as you can see from my visit to Fenway this month (picture
Big K's fan are just as enthusiastic!
enclosed). These guys were chanting his name, creating homemade signs on the spot, and cheering each ball he threw in the bullpen warming up to make a relief appearance. You got to love the enthusiasm of the fans which is a lot like his own.
I wonder if the Red Sox players are hoping he closes out games when he appears on the mound?
Who doesn't enjoy watching the high-fives he enthusiastically deals out in the players dugout. On the one hand, he is winning games for you, but on the other hand he might break yours with his energetic high-fives after the game.
It is a small sample size, well just one save appearance this year, but time will tell if this might be the solution to the Red Sox problems around Joel Hanrahan and Andrew Bailey.
No matter what anyone might think about, we need to keep bringing the Big K out for the 9th.
Eric is a contributing writer since 2013 and a true Overseas Fan of the Boston Red Sox living in the Netherlands. He's spent years on baseball fields around the world pitching. His weekends are now spent helping the next generations of pitchers to find their passion and love for the sport. More articles by Eric: https://www.redsoxlife.com/search/label/ericschabell