Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Koji Uehara, 2011 Bowman #138
Koji Uehara: I figure he's the one most likely to actually land in Baltimore. Koji loved playing here back when the team was still lousy, and during his season-plus in Texas he was actually rumored to be a trade target for the Birds once or twice. Now that he's a free agent, the Japanese control specialist has inevitably been linked to the Orioles once again. It might seem like the bullpen is the one facet of the team that doesn't need improvement, but repeat after me: You. Can. Never. Have. Enough. Pitching. What if the Pedro Strop of September rears his ugly head again? What if Luis Ayala has a crummy season, like he did in 2008 and 2009? What happens if (when) somebody gets injured? Koji turns 38 in April, but his 1.75 ERA, 0.64 WHIP, and 14.33 K/BB ratio (!) in 2012 suggest that he's got plenty left in the tank, especially for one inning per game. After making $4 million last year, he's a bit pricier than you'd like for a setup man, but come on...it's Koji!