Red Sox closer Koji Uehara has not looked sharp this spring in the Grapefruit League, yielding seven hits and two earned runs in three innings. And now he’s going to have a little less time to iron things out.
As first reported by WEEI’s Rob Bradford, Uehara suffered a strained right hamstring while doing some conditioning Tuesday in Red Sox camp. It’s considered a mild strain and Uehara should be fully recovered by the beginning of the regular season, but he probably won’t be able to make another Grapefruit League appearance until late next week.
Uehara surrendered 10 earned runs over his final 7 2/3 innings last season and he turns 40 years old on April 3. If it all comes crashing down this season for the veteran right-hander, Edward Mujica or Junichi Tazawa could move into Boston’s ninth-inning role. But let’s not freak out just yet.
Ken Rosenthal and Josh Tolentino of The Athletic report that Rays starter Blake Snell has switched agencies, going from Apex Baseball to Boras Corporation. Snell is currently signed to a five-year, $50 million contract and will be under contract through 2023.
Snell found himself in hot water two weeks ago when he said on his Twitch stream that he wouldn’t risk his life to play baseball during a pandemic while receiving significantly reduced pay. Some described Snell as tone deaf for saying, “I gotta get my money. I’m not playing unless I get mine, okay?”
Boras represents many of baseball’s highest-paid players, including Gerrit Cole and Bryce Harper. Snell is not likely to win over any of the people he recently irritated by appearing to go after more money by hiring the highest-profile agent. What often goes unsaid is that players have a very limited window in which to use their elite athletic skills to make money.
Snell won the 2018 AL Cy Young Award, going 21-5 with a 1.89 ERA and a 221/64 K/BB ratio over 180 2/3 innings. He did not have nearly the same success last year, going 6-8 with a 4.29 ERA and a 147/40 K/BB ratio in 107 innings.