Red Sox closer Koji Uehara put together one of the most unexpectedly superb seasons in baseball this year. The journeyman excelled when pushed into the closer’s role following Andrew Bailey’s injury. The Japanese righty compiled a 11-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio with a 1.09 ERA and 0.59 WHIP over 72.1 innings, saving 21 games.
More importantly, he is the master of the life-affirming high five following saves. MLB put together this video of Uehara walking the streets around Fenway Park high-fiving fans, like that old Dave Mathews Band video with Judah Friedlander.
Uehara’s penchant for high fives can be dangerous. The Boston Herald details the 38-year-old’s unusual sense of humor that’s endeared him to the Red Sox clubhouse, including this anecdote from Shane Victorino:
“He kung fu chopped me,” Victorino said. “I (almost) whupped his ass.”
The only downside for Uehara this year? His beard game remains weak. At least bring back the Abe Lincoln sideburns for the postseason.