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Red Sox | Koji Uehara adapts easily to new role

Boston Red Sox RP Koji Uehara is aware of the concerns about his health related to his workload; he's also embracing his job as closer. "I have to listen to my body," he said. "If I don't listen to it and get hurt, that would be detrimental to the team." He and manager John Farrell communicate constantly. Uehara has already pitched in 36 games and made eight appearances without a day of rest this season; last season, he pitched in 37 and made nine such appearances. Farrell says it's no different from when the reliever wasn't closing. More frequent use hasn't seemed to affect Uehara's performance whatsoever. Farrell said he believed that the veteran reliever would be successful in the role because he treats the job the same regardless of inning.

Fantasy Tip: It seems as if the BoSox have found a good balance between caring for Uehara's health and getting as much from him as they can. It's difficult to maintain that efficiency, so his fantasy owners hope that they err on the side of caution more often than not. Still, he pitched in only 37 games last year mostly because of a lat strain, so it's not like he's on a ridiculous pace for usage. He's on a career-high pace for appearances, but Farrell is conscious of those outings that are more stressful, so far. He'll make it difficult for Andrew Bailey to regain this job, so Bailey stashers must be patient.

2013-07-02 11:23:58 | Source: The Boston Globe - Julian Benbow

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