Who Edward Mujica is and how he's similar to Koji Uehara
Besides his first three seasons, during which he didn’t see much of the mound, Edward Mujica has spent most of his career in the National League, so it’s not surprising if some Sox fans don’t know very much about him. But fear not because we’re here to help.
AP Photo/Gene Puskar
The Venezuelan right-hander was first signed by the Cleveland Indians in 2001 at the ripe age of 17 as an amateur free agent. He made his MLB debut for them in 2006 and played there until 2008. He put up some pretty terrible numbers in Cleveland, and was traded to the San Diego Padres. He went from there to the Florida Marlins before being traded once again to St. Louis, where he has posted some of his best numbers.
Mujica is coming from the Cardinals after putting up a 2.78 ERA with 37 saves in 41 save opportunities. Not half bad. However, he did struggle towards the end of their season, ultimately losing his closer position.
But despite his woes late in the season, Mujica does have some pitching resemblance to Koji Uehara. He’s a strike-thrower with a split-fingered fastball that comes in around 86-89 MPH, and it’s being assumed that he’ll be a setup guy with the ability to close if necessary. As far as bullpen depth goes, that’s excellent. Looking at how amazing Uehara proved to be, it’s important to have a guy like that around.
No one is saying that Mujica will be as lights-out as Uehara, but he’ll be able to fill the same type of role. After we watched closer after closer fall to injuries last season, Cherington clearly saw how important a guy like Uehara, and now Mujica, could be to the bullpen. And, if he works out, his two-year $9.5 million contract will be a bargain.